SDSU Student's Family Hires Private Investigators

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The mother of a San Diego State University student missing in Madrid said everyone's doing what they can to locate her son.

    "They have a lot of police force out there. They're working very, very hard. We just need to keep them out there and keep the volunteers out here looking for our son so we can bring him home," said Pam Bice in an interview with the Today Show.

    It's been over a week since 22-year-old Austin Bice was last seen in Madrid, Spain where he is studying for the semester.

    Friends say he didn't go into a nightclub with his friends and decided to walk home. A Madrid newspaper reported that bouncers refused Bice entry into the club because he appeared to be too intoxicated.

    That's the last anyone saw of him.

    Family and friends have hired a private company called the Halo Corporation, comprised of former special operations military and intelligence personnel. They were believed to have departed Sunday night for Spain to supplement the current search efforts. The company's efforts in retrieving people who are abducted or kidnapped have been featured in a television show on the Discovery Channel.

    "Spanish authorities and American authorities are doing a great job. But we understand there's a lot of red tape you have to get through and these guys don't have to deal with that. They can come in, kick down doors and find him and bring him home," said Alexis Gompf, Austin's high school girlfriend.

    Gompf spoke to Austin Bice over the Internet just before he disappeared. She said they talked about the success of SDSU's basketball team and agreed to meet when he returned home.

    Bice's mother reminded everyone that her son looked different from the pictures currently posted.
    "All the pictures that we're showing right now, he's clean-shaven. But he does have a beard, a full beard right now," she said.

    Gompf urged people to donate funds to help pay for the search. Donations can be made online or at a vigil scheduled at SDSU on Monday at 6 p.m.