ESCONDIDO, Calif.—The family of missing teen Amber DuBois, 14, lashed out Sunday evening at the Escondido Police Department. The family claimed the police aren't doing enough to find Amber and haven't done a good job of following up on leads. Amber's mom Carrie McGonigle said she wants a fresh pair of eyes to look over the case and wants a private investigator brought in to look at the facts.
"I just don't think that they know the technology out there, and I don't think they have the manpower to follow through with the tips," McGonigle said of the Escondido police officers involved with the search.
Amber DuBois disappeared in February. She was last seen at Escondido High School. Amber's parents held a candlelight vigil outside the High School on Sunday evening. They claim a tip came in on August 26 that said Amber was spotted and the evidence was caught on surveillance footage. Amber's parents told reporters the tip wasn't properly investigated by police and the surveillance video was recorded over. Amber's mom declined to say where her daughter may have been spotted.
"I would think that a sighting on a video surveillance tape would be something that they would call right away on," she said.
The Escondido Police Department fired back Sunday in a written statement:
"We understand that the Dubois Family is planning to hold a press conference tonight regarding concerns over how the Escondido Police Department has investigated the case of their missing daughter, Amber Dubois. We want the public to know that we continue to have investigators working full time on this case which include detectives from the Escondido Police Department, agents from the FBI, and employees from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children as well as countless many other resources to help find Amber. Because the case is still open, we are not liberty to discuss current work being performed but it has encompassed interviews of over 500 individuals, served over 50 judicial subpoenas and the follow up of over one thousand tips. This has been one of the most extensive investigations handled by our department and also frustrates us that despite the amount of time and resources we have yet to find Amber. However we will continue to investigate this case and will remain vigilant."
Lt. Robert Benton Public Information Officer Escondido Police Department
Amber's father, Maurice DuBois, closed the candlelight vigil by saying the family doesn't want to spend another holiday with Amber. They believe she is alive and being held against her will.