Thursday, May 24, 2001

D.C. police detectives are concerned they may never know the fate of Chandra Ann Levy as they sift through the hundreds of calls they have received from all parts of the country about the graduate student, missing since last month.
“As time goes on, your leads slow down. Tips run down and you run out of people to interview. It becomes more and more difficult,” said Metropolitan Police Cmdr. Peter Newsham. “As time goes by, memories fade, and the information you are getting is not as accurate.”
Cmdr. Newsham said he could not comment about details of the investigation.
But a police source familiar with the investigation said there has been no activity on the missing womans bank or credit card accounts since she vanished April 30.
“It is like she dropped off the face of the earth,” the source said. “We dont have a clue what happened to this woman.”
Police have subpoenaed Miss Levys financial records and have been monitoring her bank and credit card accounts to see if they are being accessed.
Meanwhile, a report of Miss Levy being spotted in Reno, Nev., was discovered yesterday to be unfounded.
“We dont have any suspects [in her disappearance] because there is no evidence a crime occurred here,” said Cmdr. Newsham, who heads the 2nd Police District in Northwest. “This is exclusively a missing-person investigation. The circumstances are unusual and have drawn national attention.”
The last time the 24-year-old intern for the Bureau of Prisons was seen was April 30 at her health club. By May 6, D.C. police had begun investigating her disappearance after her parents reported her missing. She was planning to return home to Modesto, Calif., before May 9 to receive her masters degree from the University of Southern California.
When officers searched her apartment in the 1200 block of 21st Street NW, they found her bags packed, and her purse, credit cards and money still there. The only thing missing was her keys.
Her clothes and other personal property were removed from the rented condominium on Monday and taken to the police department Property Division for storage so the furnished condominium could be returned to the owner.
The FBI and police in Stanislaus County, Calif., are assisting the Metropolitan Police Department in the investigation. The FBI has helped police track down leads throughout the country, Cmdr. Newsham said.
Miss Levys disappearance has attracted attention on both coasts of the country since she disappeared from Washington as she was planning to return to California.
Her parents, Bob and Susan Levy, also have made a nationwide plea for her return.
In addition, Miss Levys connection to Rep. Gary A. Condit, California Democrat, has come under scrutiny.
The Levys live in Californias 18th Congressional District, represented by Mr. Condit, and Miss Levy met the congressman through a friend who works for him.
Mr. Condit, who was a potential candidate for a Cabinet position in the Bush administration, onceded knowing Miss Levy when he put up a $25,000 reward for information on her disappearance. He said she “is a great person and a good friend” in a prepared statement, but he will not elaborate further.
Michael Lynch, Mr. Condits spokesman, said he did not want to comment further because he would rather the focus be on the investigation. Mr. Condit has established rewards or contributed reward money to assist investigations of other crimes in his district.
Cmdr. Newsham said he could not talk about the relationship between Mr. Condit and Miss Levy or about information about any of her friends. He said the main focus of police interviews has been to learn her habits to help them retrace her moves.
“We are continuing to follow any leads and are still interviewing people, trying to get a history and her habits. Right now, all the possibilities have not been excluded — any possibilities of how she disappeared,” Cmdr. Newsham said.
He said the possibilities are endless.
“This is an adult we are talking about. She is a very intelligent woman, and she would have the capabilities and the wherewithal to disappear if she wanted to,” he said. “That is just as likely as if she came upon something tragic or terrible.
“That is what makes the investigation more difficult. We have to follow all those scenarios,” he said.

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