Police say they are using all measures at their disposal to find a missing 6-year-old girl. Wednesday, authorities expanded their search for young Yerelyn Guzmán Calvo, who disappeared from her family home in Santo Domingo de Heredia last Friday.
An estimated 175 workers from a variety of local emergency units searched through and around the Río Virilla Wednesday. Helicopters from the Servicio de Vigilancia Aérea flew above the heavily forested area to try and locate any signs of the missing child. Fuerza Pública Director Juan José Andrade said officers from the aviation department had their helicopter equipped with an infrared camera to detect signs of heat beneath covered areas.
At a press conference Wednesday, the police director was adamant that rescue crews will soon locate the girl. “We will not leave this place until we find the little girl alive or, if it be the case, dead,” Andrade said.
All search operations have been extended to 24 hours. Crews on a Tuesday shift searching for the missing child extended their work time into 5 a.m. Wednesday morning until they could proceed no longer when heavy rains and fogs made their search efforts impossible.
Search efforts have stretched as far as Pococí and the Caribbean coast where officers are going around with pictures of the girl. Back near Santo Domingo mounted policemen looked through dense coffee farms.
The child’s relative, also identified by the last name of Guzmán, remains the main suspect in the disappearance. Prosecutors have managed to have the 24-year-old held in preventative detention while the investigation continues. Allegations of sexual abuse have swirled around the girl for months because she was said to be a victim of a sexual assault case in March after her aunt brought her in for medical attention and doctors reported their findings to the police.
Rescue teams from the Cuerpo de Bomberos, Cruz Roja, Policía Montada, Unidad de Intervención Policial, Comisión Nacional de Emergencias, the Judicial Investigating Organization, and the Unidad Canina made up the search party Wednesday.