Focus shifts in search for missing 10-year-old


(KTUU) The search for a missing 10-year-old girl from the remote Alaskan village of Kotzebue was widened Thursday, with searchers turning toward Kotzebue Sound and surrounding waterways.

Alaska State Troopers say search efforts for Ashley Johnson-Barr are shifting more toward investigation and analysis, including of a cellphone — the only evidence that’s been found so far.

Jonathon Taylor with the Department of Public Safety says that, despite the shift, there are no plans to scale down the number of law enforcement officers involved in the search.

Currently, there are 17 FBI special agents, ten Alaska State Troopers and three dog teams working with the Kotzebue Police Department, under the leadership of AST. Officials with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are also assisting efforts.

Wayne Booth-Johnson, Ashley’s uncle, says the search won’t stop until Ashley is found, and that people from surrounding villages have come to help because “we’re one big family.”

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