Nearly two weeks after their daughter went missing, Becky and Sergio Celis are revealing details about the night their 6-year-old daughter, Isabel, disappeared.
When Sergio last saw the 6-year-old, he told TODAY’s Ann Curry Thursday, it was just before she went to bed. She had a baseball game early the next morning, April 21, and her mom had braided her hair. He said the last thing he remembers is “just that sweet little face.”Story: Parents of missing Arizona girl plead for her return
Becky Celis described Isabel as a loving and affectionate “girly girl” who “loves to get her makeup on and paint her nails, do your nails, do my nails, do her hair. She loves go out and play with her brothers, play hard in the dirt and come back in and get herself all girled up again.” Calling the first-grader a “beautiful baby girl,” she said Isabel gives her parents hugs all the time and tells them she loves them.
Polygraphs for parents
Though the police have received hundreds of leads, there is still no suspect in the case. There have been no calls or demands for a ransom, though the family is offering a $50,000 reward for information.
Police chief Roberyo Villasenor of the Tucson police department said both parents have taken polygraph tests. “We look at everyone to include the family. It’s not that we are saying the family’s responsible, but we’re not saying the family’s completely clear. Everyone is a suspect until we find out otherwise.”
Becky Celis said she recognizes that the scrutiny is necessary. “It’s nothing we can’t handle,” she told Curry. “We want her back, so whatever it takes to get her back, we will do.”Video: Dad: Missing Ariz. girl ‘deserves to be home’ (on this page)
“And to whomever did this, please look at her, look at her, she’s beautiful,” Sergio Celis added. “She doesn’t deserve this. She deserves to be home in her room, playing with her brothers, and just loving life the way she does.”Video: Police look for clues in missing Ariz. girl’s home
Sergio said that while the Celis family communicates every day with investigators, authorities have kept the them at bay. “We understand that they can’t bring false hope, but at the same time, we’re desperate,” Mr. Celis said. “We’re extremely frustrated that it’s taking so long and we understand that they’re doing absolutely everything possible ...we do feel sometimes that they’re wasting time with us even though we have to be under the closest scrutiny. But my goodness, she’s still out there.”Video: FBI investigating missing Arizona girl
“We just want her home,” Becky Celis said, and called for prayers for Isabel and the investigators, as well as prayers that the person holding Isabel will “have a change of heart and want to bring her home.”Video: Parents re-enact night Ariz. girl went missing (on this page)
Detectives have scoured the neighborhood, as well as nearby lakes, parks and landfills, and have contacted Mexican authorities to distribute Isabel’s picture along the border.
“The police have been very quiet and strategic in what they’ve uncovered in their investigation,” said criminologist Casey Jordan. “Remember that they know a whole lot more than what the general public knows.”Video: ‘Any possibility’ weighed in missing girl case
Volunteer efforts have included the distribution of fliers and posters, as well as a bake sale and car wash to raise money. A softball tournament to raise funds for the family will be held this weekend.
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