Dogs search for body of missing girl outside her home
AURORA – After reporting his 6-year-old daughter missing earlier this week, Aaron Thompson went on television to plead with the public for help.”I’m scared for her safety. … If anybody has information, please contact the police to bring my baby girl home,” he told KMGH-TV.But behind the scenes, police said it was a different story. While dozens of police went door-to-door, flew over the area and scoured nearby fields for Aarone Thompson, who ostensibly went missing in the middle of a snow storm and freezing weather, they said the family was being uncooperative.Other details emerged: The most recent picture of the girl, who would turn 7 Nov. 30, was a grainy photograph taken when she was 4 1/2 years old. Neighbors couldn’t recall ever seeing the child and she wasn’t enrolled in school, even though she would be old enough to be in first grade.Police on Thursday declared Aaron Thompson’s missing person report a lie and cadaver dogs on Friday searched the backyard for clues, including possibly the little girl’s body, after someone told police the girl was killed at the home.Thompson and Shely Lowe, described as his live-in girlfriend, were “persons of interest” in the case.Police say Aarone may have been killed as long as 18 months ago. Police were wrapping up interviews with seven other children in the household who have since been placed in foster homes.Interim Police Chief Terry Jones would not say what the children told investigators but said, “It’s been a significant amount of time since Aarone was in this home.”Jones said police could only speculate on why Aarone was only reported missing this week but wouldn’t say what police believe.Attorney Leta Holden, acting as a representative of the family, said the family told her each member of the family has submitted DNA samples and fingerprints. Holden did not return a phone message to her office after hours Friday.”The family is deeply concerned about the well being of Aarone and the efforts being made for her safe return home,” Holden said in a statement.Family spokesman Sam Riddle said Aaron Thompson told him he had nothing to do with Aarone’s disappearance.Jones said the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Texas provided two “cadaver dogs” to search the Thompson’s yard Friday. He said they could be called back to search other locations later.”This is the center of the universe for us,” Jones said of the Thompson house.Police suspended the search for Aarone late Wednesday and opened a homicide investigation after a tip that someone killed her at her home, Jones said. Police spokesman Marcus Dudley said the tip came from “a person with very close ties to the family.”Riddle said he has “grave concerns” about the way police are handling the case.”This police chief better … have a substantial body of evidence to back up this statement that Aarone was murdered,” he said.The child also wasn’t enrolled in school; state law requires school only for children ages 7 to 16. Neighbors said they were surprised to learn as many as eight children were living at the home, and one said she couldn’t remember seeing a little girl at the house.Jones would not release any details of evidence found so far.He said police have been speaking with Aarone’s grandparents and her biological mother, who lives in Michigan and has said she hasn’t seen her daughter since 2001 after a bitter split with Aaron Thompson.Investigators were at the Thompson home Friday, walking in and out of the house in a cul-de-sac lined neatly trimmed lawns in this east Denver suburb.