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Missing teen Sierra LaMar: Teams to search small ponds, waterways

May 9, 2012 |  1:21 pm

Sierra LaMar posters
A Santa Clara County sheriff's spokesman said Wednesday the department's dive team is searching "small ponds and waterways" in an unincorporated area of South San Jose in its search for evidence in the case of missing 15-year-old Sierra LaMar.

The announcement comes one day after officials located a red Volkswagen Jetta believed to be connected to her March 16 abduction. The mid-1990s four-door sedan with a black hood had been spotted on numerous surveillance videos near Sierra's Morgan Hill home the morning she disappeared, said Sheriff's Sgt. Jose Cardoza.

The car also appeared in videos taken in the area where the cheerleader's purse and school books were recovered a few days later. Its occupants were not visible on the videos, said Cardoza, who declined to disclose how or where the car was found.

"Investigators do have the vehicle in their custody but are asking the public to report any sightings of this vehicle and/or occupants during the time surrounding Sierra’s disappearance," Cardoza said in a statement Tuesday. "The sheriff’s office is specifically interested in hearing from anyone who may have seen this vehicle or had contact with the occupant(s) during the month of March within Santa Clara County or bordering counties."

Sierra's cellphone was also located the day after her disappearance -- in the opposite direction from the school bus stop where police believe she was headed. A massive community search effort has been underway in Morgan Hill, south of San Jose.

In addition, divers have searched reservoirs and investigators have followed up on thousands of leads. Volunteer searches were continuing Wednesday and Saturday, according to the KlaasKids Foundation, which has organized them.

The foundation has also announced that the "America's Most Wanted" TV show will feature Sierra's disappearance Friday.

Anyone with information on the case should contact sheriff's investigators at (408) 808-4500 or the anonymous tip line at (408) 808-4431. Emailed tips should be send to: tips@sheriff.sccgov.org.

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Photo: Sierra LaMar posters. Credit: Ben Margot / Associated Press.

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