ALEXANDRIA, Minn. (KMSP) - The Pope County and Douglas County sheriff’s offices want to clarify some information as they continue their investigation into the disappearance of Laura Schwendemann. The 18-year-old University of Minnesota-Morris student was last seen in Alexandria, Minn. on Oct. 14.
Last confirmed sighting
The Holiday gas station on 50th Avenue in Alexandria, Minn. is the last place investigators can “independently confirm” Laura Schwendemann’s whereabouts, based on video surveillance. She was seen leaving the gas station around 9:30 p.m. with a man she knew, in a black Geo Prism with loud exhaust.
Person of interest
Investigators have identified the man Laura was last seen with, and conducted interviews and had conversations with him. “He is a focus of this investigation. As the last known person to be with Laura, he continues to be a person that we are interested in and are investigating.”
Circumstances of disappearance
“Although we are not ruling out other scenarios, we have not received information that would substantiate that Laura is being held against her will,” the sheriff’s offices said. “We have not received information that would substantiate that Laura left by her own decision and is evading being found.”
Authorities believe the pair drove to several locations in Douglas County and Pope County the night of Oct. 14. At one point they drove by a blue house with a statue of a boy, approximately 3 feet tall with blue clothing and a red hat, near the end of the driveway.
Air searches have been conducted with fixed wing aircraft and helicopters. Ground searches have been conducted based on supporting information and will continue to be conducted when new information supports it.
How you can help
Anyone with any information related to the disappearance of Laura Schwendemann should contact the Douglas County Sheriff's Office at 320-762-8151 or the Pope County Sheriff's Office at 320-634-5411.