http://dnj.midsouthnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071212/NEWS01/712120325/1002Daughter of missing woman makes impassioned plea
By TURNER HUTCHENS firstname.lastname@example.org
Turner Hutchens, 615-278-5161
The family of a missing woman is renewing calls for the public's help in finding an unidentified man seen riding a bicycle away from the woman's car.
In a press conference Tuesday in the parking lot of the Rutherford Boulevard Wal-Mart, where the woman's car was found, LeAnn Barnes pleaded for help in finding her 69-year-old mother, Marcelene Smith.
It was the second such family press conference since Sunday, when family members gathered media at Barfield School and distributed fliers describing Smith.
Barnes asked again for the public's help to identify a man seen riding a bicycle away from her mother's Lincoln Navigator sports utility vehicle around 2:30 p.m. Thursday, the afternoon she went missing.
"I beg you, viewers, be my eyes and ears," she said.
A Wal-Mart parking lot surveillance video released by police shows a man parking Smith's vehicle, then get a bike out of the trunk of the SUV before biking south.
"Please, watch the video again," Barnes said.
She said that the man on the bicycle could be the key to finding out what happened to her mother. The man's features are difficult to make out on the video because of the distance across the parking lot from the camera.
A couple seen on video following the SUV into the parking lot that afternoon before entering the store contacted police after a public plea Monday, but were unable to offer any useful information, Murfreesboro Police Spokesman Kyle Evans said.
"When that door closed, it allowed us to go down other avenues of investigation," he said. "We're still looking through video tape. We're still following any lead we can."
Evans said he couldn't confirm statements by the family that a helicopter had been used Tuesday to aid in the search for the missing woman.
"We're not giving up on this," he said.
Smith's husband reported her missing around 6 p.m. Thursday when she did not return home. She left her 406 Village Green home in the Barfield community about 1:30 p.m. that day to go shopping, he said.
Detectives have not disclosed what, if anything, was found inside Smith's vehicle, which the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation examined for evidence on Friday.
Smith is an insulin-dependent diabetic and family members are worried about their loved one's health the longer she goes without her routine treatments. Without medication, Smith could become disoriented or, worse, go into a diabetic shock, according to family members.
Smith is 5-foot-4, weighs about 139 pounds and has short, strawberry blond hair and blue eyes. She was wearing a blue jean jacket, faded blue jeans and black shoes.
Anyone with information about the man who rode a bicycle away from Smith's vehicle is encouraged to call the Murfreesboro Police Department at 615-893-1311 or Crime Stoppers at 615-893-STOP.