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Jessica Ridgeway Missing: Backpack found likely belongs to Colorado girl, police say

Jessica Ridgeway Westminster Police

(CBS/AP) WESTMINSTER, Colo. - Colorado police said a backpack found in the town of Superior is likely linked to 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway, who went missing last Friday, CBS Denver reports.

PICTURES: Ten-year-old Colo. girl missing 

Westminster police said a homeowner found a water bottle and backpack on a sidewalk about six miles from Jessica's suburban Denver home. She was last seen Friday morning on her way to school. She never met her friends in the park that morning.

Police would not discuss the contents of the bag but said they believe it belongs to the girl. They also say the item has led investigators to expand their search for the girl to the rock creek subdivision of Superior.

Jeffco Schools officials tried to contact Jessica's mother when the girl didn't arrive at Witt Elementary School Friday morning. They left a voicemail at 10 a.m. Jessica's mother, who works an overnight shift and sleeps during the day, didn't get the message until 4:30 p.m. She immediately contacted Westminster police. It took almost five hours before the protocols were met in the case for the Colorado Bureau of Investigation to call an Amber Alert.

Jessica is described as being 4-foot-10, 80 pounds with shoulder-length blonde hair and blue eyes. She was wearing blue jeans with a black puffy jacket with a pink lining, purple eyeglasses and black boots with pom-poms.

Anyone with helpful information is asked to call 303-658-4360.