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Police release updated timeline, search headquarters changed

'This could be you,' Charlene Spierer says holding up a picture of Lauren

POSTED AT 01:07 PM ON Jun. 16, 2011  (UPDATED AT 03:31 PM ON Jun. 16, 2011)

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The Bloomington Police Department has received about 300 tips after releasing photos of a truck that could be linked to the case of missing IU student Lauren Spierer, BPD Capt. Joe Qualters said at a press conference Thursday.

Most of the tips are related to the truck, Qualters said. The BPD is currently processing and following up on the information, he said.

Qualters also tacked up a poster showing an aerial map of the streets where Lauren was seen on camera during the morning of June 3. Annotated in the margins were approximate times and locations:

Lauren entered Kilroy’s Sports Bar at about 1:46 a.m. and exited at 2:27 a.m.

She entered the Smallwood Plaza apartment complex at 2:30 a.m. and exited at 2:42 a.m.

Lauren was then seen on video walking to an alley between two apartment complexes at 2:48 a.m. The alley is between College Avenue and Morton Street.

She was seen on video leaving that alley at 2:51 a.m.

From then on, Qualters said, the BPD relies on witness statements from those who were with Lauren.

She was said to have visited an apartment on the southeast corner of 11th and Morton Streets and her final known location, based on statements from friends, was on the corner of College Avenue and 11th Street at about 4:30 a.m.

The BPD has completed its “canvassing” of the half-mile around that intersection, Qualters said. Those searches included knocking on doors, asking neighbors questions and looking for any items that might be linked to Lauren.

The truck of interest, Qualters said, is particularly important because it was seen on camera circling Morton and 10th streets around the same time Lauren disappeared.

It first appeared on video at 4:14 a.m., then drove north on Morton and appeared again on video heading west on 10th at 4:24 a.m.

BPD described the truck as a white four-door that is either a Chevy Silverado or Colorado. There appears to be writing on the side door and rear panels.

There are many construction sites around that area, and the driver of the truck could have been a worker, Qualters said. The driver may not have been involved with Lauren’s disappearance, but may have information about her, he said.

Qualters addressed questions about whether the BPD thought it looked like someone was sitting in the back of the truck.

“That is a hot topic on blogs,” he said. “And I wish we could tell you, but we are in no way in a position to say specifically what might be in the back of the truck.”

He said that in video footage, the truck appears to carry equipment such as painting tools. Private individuals have offered to help analyze the footage in a more detailed way, he said.

Robert Spierer, Lauren’s father, said he and his wife don’t know what will happen next.

“We don’t know when we’re leaving. We have no plans to leave,” he said. “We get through it with the help of everybody who comes in touch with us...The emotion and the energy and passion and concern are so genuine and comforting and energizing.”

He thanked those have helped search for Lauren, and asked for continued support. The McNutt Residence Center will now be the center of search operations, he said, and volunteers can arrive as early as 8 a.m. to sign up and help. Searches are being conducted daily at 11 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.

He asked that volunteers wear close-toed shoes and appropriate outdoor clothing during searches and bring photo identification to sign up.

Nearly 150 searchers have joined the BPD from the Indiana State Police, Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Ellettsville Police Department, Team Adam, IU Police Department and Bloomington Fire Department.

Charlene Spierer also spoke, this time directly to those who know information about her daughter.

“This could be you,” she said while holding up a picture of Lauren smiling and walking out of Smallwood Plaza. “This could be you going out on a night with your friends to just have a good time and be happy... I’m begging you, put yourself in Lauren’s place... Please give us the information that will lead to Lauren, that will help us complete our family once again.”

 

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