Missing Westchester Native Lauren Spierer's Parents Make Desperate Plea For Help, Information
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A missing Indiana University student's father broke down at a news conference Friday as the two-week mark passed since her disappearance.
Friday morning, state police and volunteers combed the main road leading into Bloomington looking for any traces that might lead them to 20-year-old Lauren Spierer.
Lauren, who is from Westchester County, was last seen walking alone toward her apartment about 4:30 am on June 3 after a night out with friends.
WCBS 880s' Catherine Cioffi reports: Robert Spierer Begs For Help In Finding His Daughter
CBS 2's Derricke Dennis got an exclusive, emotional interview with Spierer's parents, Charlene and Robert, on Friday. The couple said they were drained, but remained determined to find their daughter.
The couple spoke out because they want the word out, even in New York, that Lauren is still missing.
"You just put yourself into the emergency mode," Charlene said.
Heartbroken and numb, Lauren's parents recelled the moment they got the call that their daughter had vanished.
"What went through my mind was to get out here as fast as possible, and that's what I did," Robert said.
"I had no idea [what to do]," Charlene said. "Life doesn't prepare you for this, there's no training for this, you really don't know what to do, and you learn very quickly."
Since that day, the Spierers have been side by side with Bloomington police, making passionate pleas for any new leads. The strain and emotion of it all showed as Robert tried to deliver a Father's Day message.
"We all know that this Sunday is Father's Day," he said. "I would ask any children out there to let your parents know [that you love them]."
"The greatest gift that Robbie could have is information about Lauren," Charlene said.
Investigators say leads are pouring in. More than 500 came in since Wednesday when surveillance pictures were released showing Lauren the night she disappeared and a mysterious white truck circling her block at around the same time she was last seen.
"As we are here today, again, pretty much at the two-week mark, the bottom line is at this point, we still have a missing person. And our effort to try to find Lauren will not stop,'' Bloomington police Capt. Joe Qualters said.
Qualters said "our effort to find Lauren will not stop.''
Lauren's disappearance at 4:30 a.m. two Fridays ago raised questions about what an underage coed was doing out at that hour, and whether she'd been drinking.
"I've gone through those issues, and I've evaluated those kinds of questions, yes," Robert said.
"To be quite honest, I don't have the energy to spend on speculating on rumors or people who are trying to divert our focus from the search for Lauren," Charlene said.
The parents made a direct appeal, even to other New York families with children at Indiana University, to help answer the question: where's Lauren?
"I would implore you and beg you to just answer that one question if you have the answer to that question," Robert said.
Police said Friday they would suspend the daily briefings until Monday.
Saturday night, Lauren's case will again be featured on America's Most Wanted in hopes that additional tips on her possible whereabouts will come in to investigators.
(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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