August 10, 2013

Police: Foul play involved in missing toddler case

Staff Report

WATERVILLE — Foul play was involved with the disappearance of 20-month-old Ayla Reynolds, Police Chief Joseph Massey said in a statement late this evening.

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Ayla Reynolds

20-month-old Ayla Reynolds

Full statement from Police Chief Joseph Massey

Two full weeks have passed since Ayla Reynolds was reported missing from her home at 29 Violette Avenue in our city.  Since receiving the initial report, investigators and searchers have spent many thousands of hours looking for Ayla, and gathering and evaluating evidence which we believe will ultimately result in the successful conclusion of this investigation.

At this point, we believe that foul play has occurred in connection with Ayla's disappearance. We base our conclusions on evidence gathered by investigators during the past two weeks.  This case has evolved from the search for a missing child to a criminal investigation.  For this reason, I have asked the Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit to assume the lead role as this investigation progresses.  The men and women of the Waterville Police Department will continue to work cooperatively with the State Police and other agencies on this case until Ayla is located.  Our commitment to finding Ayla and explaining the circumstances surrounding her disappearance is as strong as it was on December 17th.  I am tremendously proud of the effort that every member of the Waterville Police Department has contributed to this case, and we look forward to a continued productive and successful partnership with the State Police, Warden Service, and the FBI.
 
Every investigator involved in this case shares the hope of Ayla's family and the public that Ayla will be located soon.  The reward offered by a group of anonymous private citizens and businesspeople is still valid, and anyone who has information that will lead us to Ayla are encouraged to call the Waterville Police Department at 207-680-4700, or the Maine State Police at 207-624-7076.

Any future dissemination of information will come from the Maine State Police.  There will no longer be periodic releases of information by the Waterville Police Department relative to this case.  Future media inquiries related to this criminal investigation should be directed to Department of Pubic Safety Spokesman Stephen McCausland at 207-626-3811.
 

"This case has evolved from the search for a missing child to a criminal investigation," Massey said.

For that reason, Massey said, the Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit has now assumed the lead role in the investigation. Waterville police will continue to work  with state police and other agencies "until Ayla is located," he said.

"Our commitment to finding Ayla and explaining the circumstances surrounding her disappearance is as strong as it was on Dec. 17," Massey said. "I am tremendously proud of the effort that every member of the Waterville Police Department has contributed to this case, and we look forward to a continued productive and successful partnership with the State Police, Warden Service, and the FBI."

Two weeks have passed since Ayla was reported missing by her father from her home at 29 Violette Ave.

Since  the initial report, "investigators and searchers have spent many thousands of hours looking for Ayla," Massey said, "and gathering and evaluating evidence which we believe will ultimately result in the successful conclusion of this investigation."

"Every investigator involved in this case shares the hope of Ayla's family and the public that Ayla will be located soon," he said.  

Massey said the $30,000 reward offered by a group of anonymous private citizens and Waterville lawyer John Nale is still valid.

Police asked that anyone with information on the case to call the Waterville Police Department at 207-680-4700, or the Maine State Police at 207-624-7076.
 
 

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