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Day 27: "The hope is that she is still alive"

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Photo: Video by kgun9.com

Day 27: "The hope is that she is still alive"

CREATED May 17, 2012

Reporter: Kevin Keen

Web Producer: Ina Ronquillo

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - "The hope is that she's still alive," said Sgt. Maria Hawke during Thursday's media briefing on missing six-year-old Isabel Celis.

There are no signs that she's alive, but no signs that she's not alive, said Hawke. Police will continue to operate under that motivation.

The case of Isabel continues to be classified as an abduction. Police are not saying whether this is a stranger abduction or an abduction by someone known to the family.

Hawke said they have not ruled out anyone as a possible suspect, including family members.

Police are nowhere near to classifying the missing case of Isabel a cold case.

"There are dedicated resources that have been pulled from other units to work nothing but this investigation," Hawke told reporters. "For that reason, they have already gotten their assignments for the next one, two, three weeks on what they're going to be doing every day and where they're going to be. We're looking into the future quite a bit."

There are currently 20 detectives and 30 support staff working on the case, she said.

Tucson police also confirmed Ariz. Child Protective Services had been involved with the Celis family before Isabel's disappearance.

“I can't say specifically when that happened, in what capacity, what the circumstances were,” Hawke said. "It was not a TPD-initiated investigation.”

KGUN9 News found records showing TPD also visited the Celis family address multiple times in recent years.

“There have been calls to the residence previously,” Hawke commented. “I can't say specifically that it was the Celis family that lived there when those calls were made. But that's not necessarily unusual.”

Authorities have received more than 1,000 leads through 9-1-1, 88-CRIME and TipSoft.

Tucson police will hold its next media briefing on Monday at 2:00 p.m.

Stay with KGUN9 On Your Side and KGUN9.com for the latest developments in the search for missing 6-year-old Isabel Mercedes Celis.