Deputies Search for Missing Girl, 6

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies and volunteers aided by bloodhounds searched Saturday for a 6-year-old Norwalk girl, whose mother said she last saw her daughter playing outside their home the day before.

Jaqueline "Jay" Saavedra was last observed about 3 p.m. Friday playing with friends in an apartment complex courtyard in the 13800 block of Shoemaker Road, said Deputy Tim Lendman. Deputies began searching for the child about 7 that evening after her mother called authorities.

"This is being treated as a missing persons investigation. She may have wandered off. At this time there is no indication of foul play," Lendman said.

Jaqueline is described as 4 feet tall and weighing 60 pounds. She was wearing blue shorts and an oversize white T-shirt with Tweety Bird on it, her mother said.

On Saturday, deputies went door to door in the 120-unit Pacific Pointe apartment complex.

"This is a very intense search," said Sheriff's Sgt. Fernando Vasquez. "They've looked under beds and in closets. Everybody has been very cooperative."

A sheriff's command post was set up in the neighborhood. More than 100 people, including deputies, volunteers and 65 members of a Sheriff's Academy class, combed the area, Vasquez said. Deputies also searched vehicles leaving the apartment complex Saturday.

The girl's mother was being questioned by sheriff's detectives Saturday afternoon at the Norwalk station, officials said.

Lt. Casey Bald said investigators are interviewing family members and neighbors. "We're going to keep going till all the leads run out," Bald said.

Authorities have been given several accounts of the disappearance, he said. "There are conflicting stories across the board," he said. "We're still trying to work it out, so we can locate her."

Anyone with information on the case may contact the Norwalk sheriff's station at (562) 863-8711.

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