Clothes found in bag belong to missing California teen, police say

The bag found on Sunday contains clothes belonging to a missing California teen, authorities said in a press conference Thursday.

Sgt. Jose Cardozza of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s office said the pants and shirt found in the bag belonged to 15-year-old Sierra LaMar.

LaMar was last seen as she left for school around 7:15 a.m. Friday.

Cardozza said the items found in the Juicy brand bag located a couple of miles from LaMar's house were confirmed to be hers by her family members.

Police are not able to confirm, however, whether the clothes in the bag were the same clothes she was wearing when she left the house Friday morning. They also would not confirm whether LaMar was known to carry extra clothes with her.

LaMar's phone was recovered Saturday night about three-quarters of a mile from her home after police tracked its electronic ping, but Cardozza said Thursday that the last text sent out was shortly after 7 a.m. Friday and it was not a distress text. He also said there was no forensic evidence on the phone.

There is currently no person of interest in the case, and police are still treating it as a missing person case.

Police said Wednesday that they were interviewing registered sex offenders in the area near where the teen was last seen.

Authorities are questioning the sex crimes offenders who live close to where she disappeared, Fox affiliate KTVU-reported. There are 276 registered sex offenders in the area.

The girl's father, Steve LaMar, who lives some 40 miles away in Fremont, is a registered sex crimes offender but is not considered a suspect in the case, according to the station.

The teen was last seen leaving for school at around 7:15 a.m. Friday morning. Police dogs searching for the girl lost her scent at the driveway of her home, authorities said.

The teenager usually walked from her home to a nearby bus stop, but a bus driver said he saw no sign of her, KTVU-reported.

Family and friends say it is unlikely that LaMar ran away, and her cellphone charger was phone in her bedroom. Her Twitter and Facebook accounts also have not been used since Thursday, leading authorities to believe she did not plan her disappearance.

On Wednesday, hundreds gathered at the Morgan Hill Presbyterian church for a candlelight vigil, including the girl's father, who appeared distraught, KTVU reported.

"If you can hear me, just realize how much I love you and want you back," Marlene LaMar, the teen's mother, said at the vigil.

Sierra, a sophomore at Sobrato High School, lives with her mother and stepfather. She transferred to the school in October after the family moved from Fremont to Morgan Hill. Sierra's father lives in Fremont. She is described as having a very good relationship with her family.

Police say they are also interviewing faculty and friends at both schools for any clues into her whereabouts. They say her family is cooperating with the investigation.

Sierra LaMar is described as 5-feet, 2 inches tall, with brown hair. She was last seen carrying a Juicy brand pink and black purse.

Anyone with information on the teenager's whereabouts is being urged to call the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department at (408) 299-2311.

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