The Federal Bureau of Investigation and two search-and-rescue dog teams have joined the Kenai Police Department in the search for a Kenai family last seen nearly two weeks ago.
Brandon Jividen, 37, his girlfriend Rebecca Adams, 22, and her two children Michelle Hundley, 5, and Jaracca Hundley, 3, were last seen on May 27 at their apartment near Chugach Avenue in North Kenai. Their dog is also missing. Both of their cars were left behind, said Audre Gifford, Adams’ cousin.
Along with FBI agents, the Alaska Search and Rescue Dogs and the Mat-Su Search and Rescue Dogs joined the ground search Sunday. Monday afternoon the search team focused their efforts in a wooded area at the end of Borgen Avenue, north of the Wildwood Correctional Facility.
Sgt. Scott McBride said the team had searched and ruled out the forested area to the east of Wildwood. The Alaska State Troopers have dispatched a helicopter to search the area from the air.
At a press conference Monday, Kenai Police Chief Gus Sandahl said the search for the family is the department’s highest priority. He said he didn’t know where the family was or why they left, but is optimistic they will be found.
“We are still very hopefully of having a happy ending,” he said. “Our officers have been working diligently to locate the family of four.”
Sandahl said investigators have explored all logical leads. The initial search concentrated from the immediate area of their apartment off Chugach Avenue and will expand from there, he said.
Lt. David Ross with the Kenai Police Department said they are aware the family’s dog is missing with them, but did not know the breed of the dog. Police have been in contact with friends and relatives, who last had contact with the family on May 27.
Ross said he encourages anyone with information to call police, even if you have had recent interactions with the missing persons. Anyone who lives in the area of Wildwood Drive, California Street, First Street and Second Street in Kenai and has seen anything suspicious over the last couple weeks is asked to share the information.
Ross said police have background information on Jividen and Adams but would not go into specifics because it is part of the investigation. Ross said Jividen’s criminal record is short with one arrest for a DUI in March 2013 in Kenai.
Jividen is described as 6 feet tall with brown hair and eyes. Adams is 5 feet, 4 inches tall, weighs 100 pounds with sandy blonde hair. Michelle has strawberry blonde hair and Jaracca has curly light brown hair.
Sandahl said he hopes everyone in Alaska would make a mental note of the pictures of the missing family, which can be seen at www.missingkids.com. If anyone does see them he urged people to call the Kenai Police at 907-283-7879.
“We are hoping for the best that they are alive and well and hoping for great news at any minute that they have been located so we can let their families know,” he said.
Reach Dan Balmer at firstname.lastname@example.org.