SAN DIEGO – Nearly two weeks after a 7-year-old girl disappeared, police again searched the home of a neighbor they have called a potential suspect in the case.
Detectives spent more than five hours at the home of David Westerfield on Wednesday night and carried out several boxes, but declined to say if they had uncovered anything important.
Police Capt. Ron Newman stressed that investigators were not preparing to make an immediate arrest.
Thursday morning, the parents of Danielle van Dam spoke briefly to reporters outside their home and called for volunteers to continue participating in the search effort.
"I just have to keep hoping that she's still alive," Brenda van Dam said, holding a portrait of her daughter.
Brenda and Damon van Dam have offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to their daughter's safe return.
Danielle was last seen on Feb. 1 when her father put her to bed in the family's home, about 20 miles north of downtown.
Westerfield, who lives two doors down from the van Dam family, has had his home searched several times and has given authorities a DNA sample that was sent to an FBI crime lab for analysis. Police have also seized a motor home belonging to the 49-year-old self-employed engineer.
On Tuesday, investigators used a bloodhound to search the van Dam home, saying they hoped the dog might be able to turn up clues they had missed in previous searches. They have not said if they found anything.