Cold Case Investigators Swarm Garrido Property

Investigators may be on scene through the weekend

Investigators are back at the Antioch property of Phillip and Nancy Garrido, the couple suspected of kidnapping Jaycee Lee Dugard.

Investigators from Hayward and Dublin joined the search Tuesday of the property on Walnut Avenue as well as the next door neighbor's property. Several agencies from across the Bay Area and around the country have looked into the couple ever since news broke of that Dugard had been found.

There are dozens of investigators searching.

Hayward officers were at the property seeking information related to the case of Michaela Garecht, who was abducted in 1998 at age 9 outside of a Hayward grocery store, officers said.

Hayward Police Search Warrant PDF

Michaela Garecht's mother is expected to come to the property late Tuesday afternoon.  She said she will speak to reporters at a news conference set for 4:30 p.m.

Hayward police officer Chris Orrey said they have had an investigator on the case from the beginning and have investigated 13,000 tips.  Orrey said the Garrido tip was one of the strongest she is aware of in all that time.  She noted similarities in the manner of abduction, ages of the victims and suspect descriptions from the Garecht and Dugard abductions.

"We're taking another shot at the property to see what we can find," Orrey said.

Investigators say they would tear the entire house down if they felt it was needed.  They said they would not leave the property without a complete search of the large piece of property.

Day one of the search did not find anything of significance according to investigators.  They said they did find things of interest that will be taken back to each city for further evaluation.

When asked if they have learned anything from Jaycee Dugard's interview with the FBI, investigators said they had spoken to the FBI but did not have anything specific from the Dugard interview that lead them to the Antioch home.

Michaela's mom came to the house Tuesday and spoke to reporters.  

Sharon Murch said she came to support the Hayward police department's effort. 

She said if Jaycee Dugard can come home alive and well after 18 years, her daughter can also come home alive and well as well.

Murch also made a direct appeal to her daughter.  "Michaela if you are out there, I want you to know we love you and miss you and there is nothing you could have done over the 20 years to change that."

Dublin investigators were also part of the new search.   They are there looking for ties to Ilene Misheloff, who was 13 when she disappeared in 1989.

Dublin officer Lt. Kurt von Savoye said Garrido had been released from prison just a few months prior to Ilene's disappearance. 

Dublin Police Search Warrant PDF

"People who commit these offenses tend to be predatory" and generally have multiple victims, von Savoye said.

Both agencies promised a very methodical search of the property.  Aerial footage of Garrido's backyard showed at least one officer on his hands and knees searching blades of grass by hand.  Hayward and Dublin investigators said they also planned to use ground-penetrating radar in their search.

The originaly search of the properties found a bone fragment which authorities have said it is likely a human bone.  Tests are still being performed on that bone. 

The search could last into next week and sources say it could include digging and knocking down buildings on the property.

Pittsburg police also searched the property for clues linking the couple to the murders of prostitutes but later said they found no evidence to tie the Garridos to those cases.

Monday, a judge set bail for Phillip Garrido, a convicted sex offender, at $30 million in the Dugard case.

Nancy Garrido is being held without bail.

Both defendants are due back in court in late October.

The Garridos are charged with kidnapping Dugard from South Lake Tahoe in 1991.

The district attorney said after court that Dugard and her two children, who authorities say were fathered by Garrido, are "doing exceptionally well" under the circumstances.  

The district attorney's office said it could take a year to 18 months to bring the case to trial. contributed to this report.

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