Chief: ‘no idea’ where missing Virginia student is

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Investigators still have “no idea whatsoever” where a missing University of Virginia student might be despite the arrest of a fugitive who was seen walking off with her, Charlottesville’s police chief said Thursday.

The search for Hannah Graham has expanded to rural areas outside the college town of 40,000, Chief Timothy Longo said. Meanwhile, Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr. agreed to be escorted to Virginia after fleeing to Texas, where he was arrested while camping out on a beach.

Matthew, a 32-year-old operating room technician at the university’s hospital, is charged with “abduction with intent to defile” the 18-year-old sophomore, and should be back in Charlottesville by Saturday, Longo said.

Matthew allegedly sped away after being questioned by police in Graham’s disappearance. He made it as far as the Texas beach town of Gilchrist, 1,260 miles from home and about a seven-hour drive from the border.

Authorities had been concerned he would try to cross into Mexico, according to a person familiar with the search who spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the person isn’t authorized to publicly discuss the investigation.

“We seem to be the end of the road,” said Galveston County Sheriff Henry Trochesset. “For us, it’s not strange that someone like that would be arrested here.”

The 6-foot-2, 270-pound former college football player appeared in a very brief extradition hearing in Galveston, where he didn’t speak other than to acknowledge his signature. He was caught the day before when a deputy responding to a suspicious person report found his tent and car. Matthew refused to identify himself, but the plates gave him away.

Graham went missing Sept. 13, after a night of partying in the college town, and search efforts initially focused on Charlottesville. While investigators consider more than 1,500 tips they’ve received, the search has moved on to surrounding Albemarle County, which is dotted with rolling hills, farms and vineyards. Longo appealed to land owners to search their properties, and to real estate agents to check on vacant houses.

More at MSN News.

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