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Isabel Mercedes Celis Missing: Tucson police scale back search for 6-year-old girl in Arizona

Members of the Tucson Police Department search a landfill at Craycroft Road and Interstate 10 for 6 year-old Isabel Celis, Monday April 23, 2012 in Tucson, Ariz. The girl's disappearance has prompted a massive search with more than 150 law enforcement officers trying to figure out whether she was abducted, a police spokeswoman said Sunday. (AP Photo/Arizona Daily Star, Benjie Sanders) NO MAGS/NO SALES/MANDATORY CREDIT Benjie Sanders

Members of the Tucson Police Department search a landfill at Craycroft Road and Interstate 10 for 6 year-old Isabel Celis, Monday April 23, 2012 in Tucson, Ariz.
AP/Arizona Daily Star, Benjie Sanders

(CBS/AP) TUCSON, Ariz. - Tucson police are now scaling back the search efforts for 6-year-old Isabel Mercedes Celis, who was last seen Friday night when she was getting ready for bed in her family's home.

Pictures: 6-year-old vanishes from Arizona home

Tucson Police Chief Roberto Villasenor said Tuesday that law enforcement officials expect to wrap up their intensive search for any sign of Isabel by Wednesday morning.

More than 20 officers will work through Tuesday night in the neighborhood surrounding Isabel's home, Villasenor said. That's a sharp reduction from the 150 officers from various agencies who first took part in the search.

The police chief also said the drop in personnel doesn't mean authorities have given up hope of finding Isabel alive.

About 50 officers finished searching a city landfill, but Villasenor would not disclose if any leads were found. Authorities had said the landfill search was conducted because trash had been taken out Saturday before police could secure the home.

Authorities said they were following more than 260 tips in the case.

"Obviously, I'm disappointed that we haven't found her at this point. But that doesn't mean we're giving up hope or that we're not going to continue to use all the resources that we need to try and find her and follow up on these leads," Villasenor said.

He said police will be shifting from searching to an investigative phase, since investigators have re-visited sites they believe could be relevant.

Investigators have kept Isabel's family away from the home as they search for clues to her disappearance from her bedroom.

On Monday, FBI dogs - one that can find human remains and the other used for search and rescue - went through the home and turned up information that required a follow-up but police declined to say what that was.

Police call the case a "suspicious disappearance/possible abduction. "We're not ruling anything out of the investigation at this point because we really need to keep our mind open about all the information that's been brought to us," Villasenor has said.

The Pima County attorney's office is offering a $6,000 reward, which includes an anonymous donation of $5,000.

More on Crimesider
April 23, 2012 - Isabel Mercedes Celis Missing: Search continues in Tucson, Arizona for 6-year-old girlApril 24, 2012 - Isabel Mercedes Celis Missing: Family says they will "never give up" search

  • Crimesider Staff

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