Police: Missing woman may have been murdered
Bemidji, MN (WDAZ-TV) - An emotional plea from the family of Rose Downwind. The mother of 5 has been missing for nearly two weeks.
Originally police believed she took off willingly. Now investigators believe the 31 year old's fate is more sinister.
Missing person's signs are plastered all over the city of Bemidji with one mission.
"Trying to bring Rose home right now," said Dwa Weston, the cousin of Rose Downwind.
Rose Downwind was last seen at the Target in Bemidji on October 19th. Her ex-boyfriend, 40 year old Marchello Cimmarusti, claims the 31 year old mother of 5 was at his house two days later, but police have not been able to verify that.
"Just vanished into thin air," said Weston.
Originally police thought the woman from Redby left on her own though her family and those around town feared the worst.
"Mom just doesn't pick up and leave," Jesse Nehl, a neighbor.
Even Cimmarusti helped put up signs around the city, including his house.
"He was putting up signs with the kids," recalled Nehl.
Thursday police announced there's a good chance Downwind likely met with foul play.
"Through the information we have receive, and through our investigation we have determined these people of interests," said Bemidji police chief Mike Mastin.
They are her ex-boyfriend and his friend 27 year old Christopher Davis.
"We have spoken with both of them, we know their location, we are not actively looking for them, we know how to contact them, we are just interested in knowing if the public has any information about them," said Mastin.
Police want to hear from anyone who may have seen or interacted with the men over the past two weeks, or saw a pewter colored 2002 Yukon with Minnesota license 325-MGP. The investigation is focused on a 65 square mile perimeter around Lake Bemidji State Park and the Buena Vista State Forest.
"When somebody goes missing it's like you are always looking over your shoulder, is that person going to appear, you are always looking," said Weston.
With hunters entering the woods for the start of hunting season this weekend, police are asking them to be extra vigilant for anything that looks suspicious. Investigators believe their big break in the case is buried somewhere in the deep woods.
"That someone was on their land, they check their land, check their cabins, any signs of residual fires, disturbed ground, clothing left behind, trail cameras," said Mastin.
A community and family hoping either police or hunters can hunt down that critical piece of information to crack the case of what happened to Rose Downwind.
"We just want to bring her home to her children, or we need closure of some type," said Weston.
Police are also anyone who has trail cameras in that region to carefully check them to see what they recorded over the past two weeks.