FORT WORTH, Texas - The search for a 69-year-old Fort Worth woman last seen at a Watauga bingo hall is poised for another level of support.
The nationally accredited team, Texas K9s, will help sniff out possible evidence.
A reward 69-year-old Carolyn Riggins’ disappearance stands at $5,000. Efforts are underway to increase it.
Riggins was last seen on the evening of July 11 at a Watauga bingo hall where police confirm she’d won a substantial cash prize.
Kimberly Haynes, Riggins’ younger sister, is optimistic about the canine team.
“They’ve participated alongside law enforcement in several high profile cases,” Haynes said. “And I just know they are going to be a big part of us finding my sister.”
Riggins’ family reported her missing from her Fort Worth apartment, and thus Fort Worth detectives lead the investigation.
Investigators say just hours after her bingo win, a freeway surveillance image captured Riggins’ license plate on her 2002 tan Lincoln Town Car with a black top headed north of Fort Worth on I-35 West.
Police support the family’s efforts to enlist the independent canine team. The same group was instrumental in the discovery of the remains of Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen.
“The latest information we have is that this volunteer canine team is coming in, which is great,” said Fort Worth Police Spokesperson Buddy Calzado. “We don’t want to leave any stone unturned. We want to look in places that maybe haven’t been looked. That we’ve thought of, we’ve been in, if they can help in any way, we’re definitely open to it.”
The police department and team Texas K9 will coordinate efforts later this week.
“It's like hoping against hope but knowing they have everything to help us and make it a productive search. We’re going to find something,” Haynes said.
Detectives are still asking for the public to assist them with any information or credible leads.