Federal investigators say the disappearance of a 3-year-old West Virginia girl is now considered a crime, the Charleston Daily Mail reports.
FBI Special Agent Jeff Killeen told media outlets Monday that investigators no longer believe Aliayah Lunsford just walked away from her Bendale, W.Va., home Sept 24. Lena Lunsford told police her daughter was in bed that morning at 6:30, but there's been no sign of the child since.
Killeen said she's likely been the victim of a homicide or abduction, and that authorities have identified a few people of interest.
More than 1,000 volunteers helped hunt for the girl last week, but as of Monday only professionals remained involved in the search. The target area is a 5-mile radius around the Lunsford home.
Aliayah's family was moved to an undisclosed location last week and the home was roped off with crime scene tape.
Aliayah is about 3 feet tall and 35 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. Her ears are pierced and she is missing her top four front teeth, according to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. She was last seen in purple pajama bottoms and a pink sweatshirt.
No Amber Alert was issued after she vanished because the case didn't meet the requirements of that program. Amber Alerts require a vehicle description or license plate number, and investigators didn't have either.
Lena Lunsford has four other children, from 9 months to 11 years old, and is eight months pregnant with twins.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.