Police continue to search for missing 5-year-old girl, offer $20K reward

Dulce Maria Alavez
Photo credit Bridgeton Police Department
By KYW Newsradio 1060

UPDATED: 4:20 p.m.

BRIDGETON, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — The search continues for a 5-year-old Bridgeton girl who police believe was abducted Monday afternoon while playing in the city's park with her 3-year-old brother.

A statewide Amber Alert was issued some 30 hours after Dulce Maria Alavez disappeared. The child's mother was attending to a young relative in her car a short distance away at the time.

State and local police and the FBI are conducting a search for a thin, light-skinned man, possibly Hispanic, with acne on his face but no facial hair. He could be driving a red van with tinted windows and a sliding passenger-side door. Police say now the car may also be an SUV.

Now, authorities are offering a $20,000 reward for anyone who can provide information that can help find Dulce. The FBI contributed $5,000, as well as the Cumberland County Prosecutor's Office. The other $10,000 has been offered by Newfield National Bank.

20 G reward for info leading to abducted Bridgeton girl. Details @KYWNewsradio pic.twitter.com/DQfjv7MEH4

— David Madden (@DavidMadden1060) September 19, 2019

Dulce's grandmother spoke at a press conference Thursday afternoon in Spanish, tearfully asking for anybody to come forward with any information.

"Please, if you have any information, help us find my granddaughter," said a translator, who spoke on her behalf. "Do not be afraid of the police. We have not been able to eat nor sleep. You can't imagine what we are going through."

Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae said they're still searching for the alleged kidnapper.

"We need to speak to this person and feel that he may have information that will greatly assist us in this investigation," she added. "To our immigrant, undocumented community: We will not be asking questions about your immigration status. We only want information that will help us find Dulce."

The child is about 3 feet, 5 inches tall with a medium build and dark hair in a ponytail. She was wearing a yellow shirt with a koala bear on it, black-and-white checkered pants with a flower design, and white sandals at the time she disappeared.

Police ask anyone with information to call the Missing Persons Unit at 609-882-2000, ext. 2857, the Bridgeton Police Department at 856-451-0033, or 911.