Friday Developments in Search for Alexis Murphy
Investigators moved quickly to an area north of Lovingston Friday night to conduct a search in the case of Alexis Murphy, a missing 17-year-old from Nelson County.
Alexis left her home in Shipman Saturday night. Surveillance video shows her at the Liberty gas station in Lovingston around 7:15 that night. That was the last time she was seen. Her car was found on Tuesday at Carmike 6 movie theater in Albemarle.
Friday night around 8 p.m., police searched the area of Cannery Loop and Eades Lane for at least the second time. This time they brought an army of men and K-9 units to the wooded section of the area.
We learned from neighbors Friday that police were searching their homes and the area nearby in search of Alexis' cellphone. Neighbors who live on Cannery Loop say police also searched their yards and houses Monday. They say the FBI told them the last ping on Alexis' phone was closest to their street.
Neighbors say everything from sheds to creek banks to refrigerators were searched and that they are happy to help if this can bring Alexis back home because her disappearance is affecting the whole community.
"You see it on T.V. but you can't imagine it would happen to you. It's just kind of devastating," said Keith Spencer, who lives on Cannery Loop.
Neighbors say police have been searching ditches and medians on nearby Route 29 all week. A search helicopter also circled the area above Cannery Loop Friday afternoon but there is still no sign of Alexis or her missing cellphone at this point.
The FBI did confirm Friday that it plans to go national with this investigation and has already had inquiries from national media outlets.
We also learned that the Virginia Department of Transportation unfortunately can't offer much help in the search. Though VDOT has a network of cameras, they can't be used to track Alexis' car between Lovingston and Albemarle County.
The cameras are monitored in Augusta County, but those cameras are live-looks only and none of the feeds are recorded. That means police cannot go back and piece Alexis' trail together by using stored images.
If you have any information, authorities are asking you to call 434-263-7050.