To me this is long overdue. To me things like this should have been done immediately. But I do understand that circumstances were extremely confusing. And many times we were given information that the child was alive and we had no reason to suspect her of being deceased. So to see this search is actually a positive thing in one light, but in another light it is a bit disappointing for me because I don’t like the fact that it’s been 70 days.

I do feel better though knowing that they are going to be concentrating on particular areas. And not the entire landfill as a whole. Because the thought of them searching the entire land field is a bit concerning. I’m not saying they can’t accomplish anything or won’t find anything, but I’d be more frustrated that they would Overlook something. And then we don’t even really know what they are looking for. We are assuming that they are looking for a body but they could be looking for pieces of evidence just related to the case. It could have been tossed out cell phones tossed out computers or any type of hint that they would have from a certain time frame they could be looking and investigating that.


WINSLOW, Ind. — Evansville police and the FBI started searching a Pike County, Indiana, landfill in connection with the Aleah Beckerle case on Monday, but an Evansville Police Department spokesman said authorities will continue to follow up on other leads in the case.

Evansville Police Department Sgt. Jason Cullum encouraged people to come forward if they have any information that could lead to an end of the two-month search for the special-needs teen who went missing from her Iowa Street home in July. Despite the ominous look of searching a landfill, Cullum said investigators are still moving forward with the thought that “she could still be alive.”

“This is not an acknowledgement that she is deceased. Obviously, that we’re searching a landfill can create grim speculation,” Cullum said while standing in front of the landfill on Monday morning. “We have found nothing during our investigation that tells us that she is not alive.”

The Evansville Police Department remains the lead agency in the case, though the FBI has been involved since days after Beckerle was reported missing by her mother on July 17. Beckerle is wheelchair-bound, cannot speak and requires medication to control seizures. Cullum said the federal search warrant was needed for jurisdictional purposes. Officials from Advanced Disposal have been cooperative with the investigation, he said.

The warrant used for the search has been sealed by a federal judge and the information gathered that led to the issue of that document were not disclosed on Monday.

Cullum said searchers are focused on a specific area of the landfill, not the entire facility. The department released photos of some of the area, as well as the equipment that will be used during the search, but did not specify the search location. The landfill will remain open for business during the search, but the site will be off limits to the public until the search is complete. Law enforcement officers from the Pike County Sheriff’s Office and the Petersburg Police Department will be at the front of the facility while the investigation is going on. Cullum did not provide a timetable of how long the search is estimated to take.

“There are lot of different factors that will play into that determination of when we stop,” he said.