New Details Surrounding Former Newburgh Teacher’s Disappearance
Police released new details as they continue to search for a former local teacher, despite some social media posts saying she's been found dead.
Jessica Lopez of Newburgh has now been missing for over 20 days. The New Windsor Police Department says finding Lopez has been the department's top priority since taking over the investigation from City of Newburgh police and learning about the suspicious nature surrounding Jessica’s disappearance
To date, Jessica has not contacted any of her family or friends and she still has not used her cell phone or any of her credit cards, police say.
Lopez was last seen in the early morning hours of Nov. 3 at the Windsor Motel on Rt 9W in the Town of New Windsor. Lopez's family says it's very out of character of her to be at the motel.
Police previously said Lopez was last seen during the evening hours of Nov. 1 near her vehicle outside of her home on Dubois Street in the City of Newburgh. Her car was found days later in the Town of Newburgh. On Nov. 1, Lopez was at the Chili's in Newburgh. Her friend drove her to her home in the City of Newburgh where she got into her car.
Police and Lopez's family believe her car could give the best clues as to what happened to her.
Lopez’s silver 2005 Toyota Camry, NY Registration JDC9597, was found at Showtime Cinema on Route 300 in the Town of Newburgh.
Authorities now believe Lopez's disappearance might be domestic-related.
“We have learned that Jessica was with a known acquaintance of hers at the Windsor Motel on November 3rd and we are exploring the possibility that her disappearance is domestic-related," New Windsor Police Chief Robert Doss said in a press release.
The New Windsor Police, along with many law enforcement partners, including the FBI, have been searching dozens of areas for any clues or evidence in relation to Jessica’s whereabouts. On a daily basis, the New Windsor Police Department has been coordinating teams of federal, state and local police officers in searching these areas on foot. As part of these searches, we have used law enforcement resources including: fixed-wing and helicopter aviation from the NYSP, drone aviation and watercraft from the NYSP and the NYS DEC, scuba divers from the NYSP, various police agency canines, ATV’s and even metal detectors.
While all this has been happening, dozens of investigators have been following up on over 350 leads.
“I have witnessed the investigators incredible dedication, teamwork and focus in this case and I can assure you that they are doing everything they possibly can for Jessica and her family.” These investigators are exploring all possibilities as to where Jessica could be and what exactly happened on November 3rd," Chief Doss said.
Late Sunday, posts on social media stated that Lopez was found dead. Lopez's brother denies the allegations and police have not released anything about a dead body being found.
"I’ve seen a lot of posts claiming that my sister’s body was found and people writing “RIP Yessica”. Yessica’s body has not been found. If you see anyone posting something like this, I’m asking everyone to help me by reminding them to be mindful of her family and friends who are hurting deeply everyday. Losing a loved one is one of the most painful situations anyone can go through," Lopez's brother wrote on Facebook.
Lopez, who goes by the name "Yessica," is a former teacher in Newburgh, according to her social media accounts. Her brother says she recently quit her job working as a health clinic in Newburgh to care for their sick father. Their brother, Franklin Lopez, died in December 2018.
Lopez is described as being 5'3" and 135 pounds with light brown eyes and brown hair with highlights. The FBI is also searching for Lopez.
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