Family Friend Charged With Kidnapping Girl

A family friend was charged with kidnapping a 7-year-old girl who disappeared after riding her bicycle to a grocery store.

As many as 120 police officers and volunteers searched Tuesday for Patricia Ann Miles (search), who vanished Sunday morning. Her pink bicycle and shoes were found Monday in a cornfield, police said.

A family friend who occasionally baby-sat for the girl, Jo Ann Buchanan (search), was arrested, but she has refused to speak to investigators, Crittenden County sheriff's investigator Thomas Martin said.

"The leads we've been following and the evidence we've gathered — look for something very substantial tomorrow," Martin said Tuesday evening.

He said there's "a very good possibility" Patricia will be found alive but declined to elaborate.

Searchers scouring southern Mississippi County, about 25 miles north of Memphis, Tenn., searched until nightfall Tuesday and planned to return Wednesday. Police would not say what led them to the site.

Patricia rode her bike to the grocery store Sunday morning and phoned Buchanan, who lives nearby, telling her she didn't have enough money for both a snack and a drink, authorities said. Police said the girl went to Buchanan's home for some money, then went back to the store to make her purchase, but never returned home.

A judge set bond at $1 million for Buchanan on Tuesday.

At the bond hearing, prosecutors said a witness saw Buchanan put the girl and her bicycle into her van Sunday morning. About 45 minutes later, another witness saw the van stopped on a highway near the spot where searchers found the bicycle and shoes, authorities said.

Buchanan acknowledged at the hearing having undergone treatment in the past for depression. She said she had not taken medication in months.

Police also questioned a man identified as the missing girl's cousin, who townspeople said was also Buchanan's boyfriend.

Patricia's mother, Vickie Robertson, said she was praying for her daughter's safety. The family planned a vigil late Tuesday.

"We love you, want you to come back home, home safe with us," the girl's aunt, Donna Franklin, said. "Whoever got her, bring her home. She's just an innocent little child."