OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Investigators say they have been doing everything in their power to try to find missing metro woman Marilane Cater, but lead detective Blake Larsen said they have run into roadblocks.
“I want people to know, we are doing everything possible,” Larsen said in a news conference on Aug. 14, 12 days after she was last heard from.
Carter, an Overland Park mother of three, left on Aug. 1 for Birmingham, Alabama. Larsen said they have records of her traveling through Rolla and stopping temporarily in West Plains, Missouri. She then continued south into Arkansas.
She was seen at a gas station in West Memphis. Her phone pinged one more time on that day, Aug. 2, and then her trail disappeared.
“After her phone goes off at 8:02… it goes cold,” Larsen said.
The detective told reporters that officers don’t have much more evidence than that. He said that’s what has made this case particularly unusual, prompting a large response.
He said officials have tried tracking the vehicle through OnStar and satellite radio, but there is no information based on the vehicle she was driving, a 2012 GMC Acadia. Traffic cameras in the Memphis area have also come up empty.
“We’ve even attempted to get a search warrant in the Kansas courts for her cellular tower pings,” Larsen said. “In the state of Kansas, the statute does not allow for the community care-taking function.”
He said that type of warrant is only available for criminal activity.
“At this time, there’s no reason to believe that any criminal activity is afoot or anything nefarious has happened, especially in Overland Park, Kansas or the Kansas City metro.”
Agencies in Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee have gotten involved in the search, including the FBI. Even the public have gotten involved, taking boats to the Mississippi to begin searching with sonar devices.
“This has kind of mushroomed into a lot of good Samaritans and civilians helping in the search, and we appreciate that,” Larsen said. “At this point the tips we have gotten haven’t panned out.”
He asked anyone with a good tip, either here or down near Memphis, to contact their local police department.