Year later, KC police still investigating baby's disappearance

Monday, October 1, 2012

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A year after 10-month-old Lisa Irwin was reported missing from her Kansas City home, police say they still want a "one-on-one" discussion with Deborah Bradley, the baby's mother, but Bradley's lawyer says she's been accessible to police all along.

Bradley and Jeremy Irwin reported their daughter missing from their home early Oct. 4, 2011. Police and the FBI conducted extensive searches, but no one has been charged. A $100,000 reward is being offered to anyone with information that brings the child home, and a vigil is planned for Wednesday evening at the family's home.

The parents have said they believe someone kidnapped the baby from her crib while the father was working a late shift. The mother admitted she had been drinking with a next-door neighbor that night, but says she put the child in her crib early in the evening and had nothing to do with the baby's disappearance.

Kansas City police released a statement Friday recapping certain aspects of the investigation, saying they've worked 1,667 tips, including 500 baby sightings from around the world, The Kansas City Star reported.

Police said investigators also have double-checked about 100 leads and shared their information with national experts. They said any leads provided by the family and their lawyers haven't helped the investigation.

"While communication with the family has been ongoing, police have not had the opportunity to sit down one-on-one to speak with Lisa's mother, Deborah Bradley," the police statement said.

Bradley initially gave police an interview in the days immediately following Lisa's disappearance, but later said she felt police had become accusatory and that she didn't want to talk to them. Her attorneys also criticized police, accusing detectives of being abusive and focusing too much on Bradley.

The parents' lawyer, Joe Picerno, told The Star that Bradley has been available to the police and has answered their questions.

"The last time we sat down, I didn't say a word and they got to videotape it," he said Friday. "They got to ask everything they wanted, so we are a little suspicious, as we have been all along, about why they want to isolate her."

Robert Lowery, a senior executive with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, said parents' cooperation is vital to missing children investigations and he'd advise Irwin and Bradley "to reconsider" sitting down with police.

"The final concern is finding the child and returning her home," Lowery said.

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