Although the Hayward police department has declared the search for missing nursing student Michelle Le a homicide, her family says they are not giving up hope on finding her alive.
Le's family held a news conference Tuesday saying they think she is still alive and needs to be "rescued." They said until the police find a body they should not call the case a homicide. They told NBC Bay Area Christy Smith that they have not been given any conclusive or compelling evidence that Michelle is dead, "as widely suggested." They said the police only told them what they told the public. Investigators said Monday that they decided to call the case a homicide investigation after a forensic examination of Le's car, multiple interviews of persons of interest and video evidence.
“Even though the Hayward Police Department has given up on finding Michelle alive, our family and friends continued to maintain hope and faith in her return,” Le's father Sun said Tuesday. “Until the Hayward Police Department can offer conclusive and definite proof – otherwise we will continue to believe that she, Michelle, is still alive and needs to be rescued.”
Police met with the family Monday night to explain why they believe that their loved one is already dead.
The Hayward police released the following statement:
"We realize this is the worst possible news for Michelle's family and friends, and for everyone involved in looking for her. Despite everyone's hopes, our effort to find Michelle is officially an effort of recovery."
Hayward police would not disclose publicaly what specific evidence lead them to that conclusion.
As of Monday night, the Hayward police said investigators had questioned 25 people regarding the case.
Le was reported missing after not returning to the hospital from the parking garage at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Hayward Friday May 27.
Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Hayward Police at 510-293-7034.