Authorities suspend physical search for Diana Alvarez

Published: Updated:

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Crews will not be conducting physical searches for missing San Carlos Park 9-year-old Diana Alvarez, but authorities will follow any leads in their ongoing investigation into her disappearance, according to an announcement Wednesday.

The mother and stepfather of Alvarez gave statements regarding the search in a press conference at their attorney, Tom Busatta’s, office.

Busatta said investigators have revealed information showing that Jorge Guerrero, the man accused of kidnapping Alvarez, did in fact play a role in her disappearance.

“Based on statements Mr. Guerrero made to law enforcement,” Busatta said, “there is admissions that places him with Diana at some period on the morning, approximately at 3 o’clock in Lee County.”

After Alvarez disappeared from her home on May 29, a major with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office said authorities attempted to request an Amber Alert twice before it was finally issued, Busatta said.

LCSO’s previous attempts to issue the Amber Alert were rejected by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), Busatta said, something state law officials deny.

On May 29 at 11:45 p.m., “FDLE received a request from Lee County Sheriff’s Office for a Missing Child Alert. A Missing Child Alert was issued,” said Gretl Plessinger, spokesperson for FDLE.

On June 2 at 11:34 a.m., LCSO requested an Amber Alert and “FDLE updated the Missing Child Alert to an AMBER Alert,” Plessinger added.

The sheriff’s office refused to answer additional questions Wednesday pertaining to the timeline of the Amber Alert issued for Alvarez, but it did release a statement saying in part “as we do with every case, a wide variety of manpower and specialized resources converged immediately upon report that Diana Alvarez was missing.”

The sheriff’s office adds the investigation is still active and “there are no additional suspects being investigated in this case” at this time.

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