The disappearance of a woman near Cal State San Bernardino last week does not appear to be connected to recent attacks at the school, police said.
Sahray Astina Barber, 22, has been missing since March 9, when she was seen leaving for work about 6 a.m. from her apartment across the street from the university. On Sunday, San Bernardino police announced that it was investigating two persons of interest who may be involved in her disappearance.
Authorities did not provide a description of the people or say how they may have been involved in Barber’s disappearance. Barber’s laptop and cellphone were found in some bushes near a parking lot where the trail on her initially went cold, police said.
But tips have flowed into authorities in the last week, police said. Some of those have led to remote homes and ranches across San Bernardino County, police Lt. Rich Lawhead said.
“We’re searching a number of locations, all the remote areas,” Lawhead said last week. “We don’t have any solid [ones]. We’re following up on every little lead that comes in."
Detectives said there weren’t any signs of a struggle and the phone and laptop were intact -- as if they’d been set down, Lawhead said.
The case took on a higher profile than typical missing-persons cases because twice in the last few weeks women have been attacked at the university.
In the most recent incident, a man approached a woman from behind, put his hand over her mouth and said, “Come on, let’s go for a ride in my car,” before she fought him off.
Two weeks ago, a woman fought off an attempted sexual assault in the school library.
No arrest has been made in either case, but police have released a sketch of the suspect.
Police Chief Jarrod Burguan said in a video posted online last week that detectives were looking into any potential links to the incidents but so far haven’t found any.
“Rest assured, we immediately looked to see if there was any potential connection in our investigation,” Burguan said. “However, at this point, we are not able to connect the on-campus incident" to Barber's disappearance.
For breaking California news, follow @JosephSerna.