SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) -- Exactly one year ago, the body of Nicole Fitts was found in a shallow grave at McLaren Park in San Francisco. Her daughter, Arianna is still missing. Finally, investigators say there may be a break in this case.
At a candlelight vigil to mark the anniversary of Nicole's death and Arianna's disappearance, her family says time has passed, but the emotions are still raw.
"It doesn't feel like reality, I feel like any day now my sister is going to call me," said Contessa Fitts, Arianna's aunt. "I am going to look at my phone and she's sent me a text message."
But the reality for Contessa Fitts is that she will never hear her sister's voice again. This day, last year, was the last time anyone saw Nicole alive.
The focus now: finding Nicole's now 3-year-old daughter, Arianna.
"Arianna is our hope," said Claire Bonnar, Arianna's aunt. "We're doing everything we can to have this girl home."
The family says there may be a break in the case. Friday, FBI investigators seized a vehicle that may be connected to Nicole's murder and Arianna's disappearance. The family says investigators will be testing the car for DNA evidence.
"As unfortunate as it is, these things are happening. It's also just great news," said Bonnar.
It is great news in light of this family's tragedy.
"It is really hard, it's been a very difficult year," said Bonnar.
Since Arianna's disappearance, the FBI executed search warrants in Oakland, Emeryville and Daly City, all in an effort to find the little girl.
The family says investigators initially focused their investigation on Arianna's babysitter, Helena Martin and that she would be the key to bringing Arianna home alive
"I'd really hate to think someone Nicole trusted with her child, that someone Nicole trusted as a friend would do anything to harm either Nicole or Arianna," said Bonnar.
Police still have no suspect in Nicole's murder but her sister says believes her death is connected with her niece's disappearance.
"Whoever is responsible for Arianna's being missing is responsible for murdering my sister," said Fitts.
Meanwhile, Nicole's former employer, Best Buy is offering a $10,000 reward for any information that leads to Arianna's safe return and the arrest of Nicole's killer.
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