Search intensifies, grows for missing South Jersey girl

Autumn Pasquale. (Facebook)
Autumn Pasquale. (Facebook)
Posted: October 23, 2012

Authorities are calling in more law enforcement personnel to help join the round-the-clock search or a missing 12-year-old Clayton, Gloucester County, girl.

Autumn Pasquale was last seen leaving her West High Street home on a white BMX bicycle at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, according to law enforcement authorities.

She was reported missing at 9:30 p.m. after missing a family-imposed curfew.

The Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office said that, "a growing number of law enforcement personnel" from various agencies are joining today's search.

Investigators were coordinating ground search efforts around Clayton with a New Jersey State Police aerial unit assisting.

County Prosecutor Sean F. Dalton has scheduled a 2 p.m. news conference in the Gloucester County Government Services Building, 1200 N. Delsea Drive, Clayton, to update the public on the search efforts.

Clayton police began their search Saturday night, but were unsure of where to focus and so cast a wide path.

Clayton Police Department officers fanned the area. A county-wide Child Abduction Response Team coordinated by detectives at the Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office joined the search.

The search continued Sunday night through Monday morning, according to the prosecutor's office.

Authorities called in a New Jersey State Police helicopter, bloodhounds and others to comb various locations.

Family, friends and volunteers joined the scouring of locations including a bike trail leading from Clayton to the neighboring community of Williamstown and Scotland Run Park on the outskirts of Clayton.

About 40 officers took part in Sunday's search, including members of the county's Emergency Response Team.

Pasquale was wearing navy blue sweatpants, a yellow "Clayton Soccer" T-shirt, bright blue high-top sneakers, and backpack with "Reckless" written on it. She was riding a white, Odyssey BMX bike.

Her father, Tony Pasquale, told reporters he believes his daughter was heading to a friend's house. He became worried when he discovered she never made it there.

"This is not like her," Pasquale told news crews. "She would have been home 11 o'clock this morning (Sunday) if she slept over a friend's house.

"Everybody is working together to try to find her," he said. "We all love her and we just want her to come home."

A Find Autumn Pasquale Facebook page has been setup at https://www.facebook.com/FindAutumn. And a Twitter hashtag is being used to connect messages: #helpfindautumn

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