Authorities say a man suspected of abducting a 16-year-old Southern California girl and possibly her 8-year-old brother might be armed with homemade explosives.
San Diego County Sheriff's Capt. Duncan Fraser said Thursday that evidence recovered at James Lee DiMaggio's home east of San Diego suggests he might have fled with explosives.
The search for Hannah Anderson and her younger brother has now reached five Western states, Canada and Mexico. The FBI and various state and local law enforcement agencies are assisting in the search.
Fraser says it's possible DiMaggio was infatuated with the girl. Her mother, Christina Anderson of Lakeside, was found dead at DiMaggio's burning home near a dead child who might be the girl's younger brother, Ethan Anderson.
However, investigators say the child’s body is so badly burned they have not been able to positively identify the child.
DiMaggio, 40, of Boulevard and Anderson, 16, of Lakeside are the subjects of an Amber Alert issued Monday.
After four days, the Amber Alert was shifting focus outside California after reported sightings in Northern California and Washington state. The Amber Alert has been issued in California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Arizona.
Sheriff’s homicide Lt. Glenn Giannantonio said none of the leads have panned out.
"For all we know they could be hunkered down in the Cleveland National Forest camping or something and waiting until this blows over and then they're going to come out," he said.
Officials say DiMaggio is an experienced outdoorsman with skills to survive in the wild.
DiMaggio is believed to be driving a blue Nissan Versa with California license 6WCU986.
"We're very concerned for Hannah. We believe she is in grave danger," said Lt. Giannantonio describing DiMaggio as a dangerous, desperate person.
Detectives are concerned that, if armed with homemade explosives, DiMaggio might rig his car with those devices and abandon the vehicle.
“If you see this car, do not approach it. Call 911. Let law enforcement respond to the car and bring in their specialized units that know how to check it for explosives,” said Jan Caldwell of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.
As the search intensifies, officials are asking the public to remain alert and report any and all sightings to authorities.
"Keep these faces in your mind. The little boy, the young girl, the man, the subject, DiMaggio. Keep these faces in your mind and if you see someone that even remotely looks like that, please call 911,” said Caldwell.
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