KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Monday marks a somber anniversary for the Kennewick Police Department and a local family.
10 years ago, 4-year-old Sofia Juarez mysteriously vanished from her home. Despite the best efforts of local police, Sofia's whereabouts are still unknown.
Sofia Juarez disappeared on February 4th, 2003. It's a day frozen in time for officers who responded to one of the most well-known cases in our region.
"She went missing that evening, I was assigned to come back and work the next day, I was part of the team, we started canvassing and working the neighborhood the next day," said Kennewick Police Sgt. Ken Lattin.
Four year-old Sofia Juarez vanished from her Kennewick home one day before her birthday. When her family realized she was missing, police and community members hit the pavement to bring her home.
"I spend the night at the Kennewick Police Department that evening, working with the FBI, working with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children," said Kennewick Police Chief Ken Hohenberg.
But days turned into weeks, and then years. Police interviewed thousands of people, followed up on countless tips and even chased rumors that she was taken to Mexico, or buried in a field.
"The urban myth that she was hit by a car and buried in horse heavens has been run to the ground, many many times. We've dug up a lot of dirt, followed up on every lead," said Sgt. Lattin.
On the 10th anniversary of her disappearance, police may not be any closer to finding the little girl once described as happy and playful. But that doesn't mean they've stopped looking.
"Over the years, the case has been handed off to a new investigator to go through the volumes, many 3 ring binders full of information.. fresh eyes to re-read it, see if there's something new, something we missed," said Sgt. Lattin.
Sgt. Lattin asks that anyone with any information on this case contract the Kennewick Police Department.