Police Seek Transient for Questioning in Salt Lake City Kidnap Case

More than a week after a 14-year-old girl was apparently kidnapped from her bedroom, police Wednesday identified a man they think may have information about her disappearance.

A milkman told police that two days before Elizabeth Smart disappeared, he saw a car drive slowly up and down her street about 7 a.m., then follow him up another street. The milkman then took down the Utah license plate number.

Police want to question the car's owner, Bret Michael Edmunds, a 26-year-old transient, Police Sgt. Fred Louis said.

"We don't think he's a suspect at this point," Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Fred Louis said. Edmunds was being sought on outstanding warrants on charges of fraud and assault on a police officer.

He is probably living in a 1997 green Saturn with Utah license plate number 266XJH, Louis said.

Ed Smart, Elizabeth's father, said in a statement Wednesday that police had showed the family Edmunds' photograph, but they did not recognize him.

In early May, police in another city stopped Edmunds for having improper car registration. Edmunds allegedly sprayed the officer with pepper spray and sped off, police said.

"Even if he had nothing to do with the abduction, we'd like to get him off the street," Assistant Police Chief Craig Gibson said.

Elizabeth was taken from her home in the early morning hours of June 5, police said. Her sister, who shared a bedroom with her, said the man threatened to harm Elizabeth if she told anyone. She waited two hours to tell her parents.

Elizabeth's sister described the kidnapper as a 5-foot 8-inch man. Edmunds is 6-foot 2-inches tall and 235 pounds.

The search for suspects has included people who were known to have had access to the home, and sex offenders who live in the region.

Police also subpeonaed television stations that aired news footage on the case, particularly of volunteer searches for the girl.

"We're looking at the crowds on the theory that a criminal often stays in the same areas where he committed the crime," prosecutor Kent Morgan said.

Stations prepared tapes of footage that was aired and were cooperating fully, he said.

In all, police have interviewed hundreds of people and received 6,000 leads, of which 600 were deemed worthy of following up. About half of the 600 leads have been cleared.