Police continue search for missing teenager and murder suspect
BOULEVARD (CNS) – A search continued Wednesday for a man suspected of killing a friend, kidnapping at least one of her two children and setting fire to his Boulevard home, where the woman's body was found along with that of an unidentified child over the weekend.
The whereabouts of 8-year-old Ethan Anderson and 16-year-old Hannah Anderson have been unknown since Saturday. Sheriff's investigators believed one or both may have been abducted by James Lee DiMaggio, 40, for whom a felony warrant was issued Tuesday.
DiMaggio is suspected of killing 44-year-old Christina Anderson, whose remains and those of the unidentified child were discovered in his burned-out house on Ross Avenue in the unincorporated community of Boulevard shortly after 8 p.m. Sunday, according to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.
Investigators determined that Anderson had been the victim of homicide, but how the child died was not immediately determined, sheriff's homicide Lt. Glenn Giannantonio said.
The deceased child found in the rubble of DiMaggio's home remained unidentified, Giannantonio told news crews Tuesday evening after their father urged the suspect to let his daughter go.
“It is a possibility that it's Ethan,” the lieutenant said. “It's a possibility that it's another child (whom) we haven't identified yet or don't realize is missing yet.”
The children's father on Tuesday evening addressed the suspect — formerly a close friend.
“Jim, I can't fathom what you were thinking,” Brett Anderson said. “The damage is done. I'm begging you to let my daughter go. You've taken everything else.”
He also addressed the missing girl.
“Hannah, we all love you very much,” he said. “If you have a chance, you take it. You run. You'll be found.”
A statewide amber alert was issued Monday evening. Authorities believe DiMaggio may be driving a blue 2013 Nissan Versa sedan, California license plate 6WCU986, and possibly headed to either Texas or Canada.
The suspect is 5 feet 9 inches tall and about 150 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. Hannah is 5-foot-7 and 115 pounds, with blond hair, blue eyes, a navel ring, nose stud and pierced ears. Ethan was described as 4-foot- 11 and 65 pounds, with sandy blond hair. All three are white.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the suspect or the missing children was asked to call the sheriff's department at (858) 565-5200 or San Diego County Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.