Summer Wells: TBI looking for pickup truck driver seen in area where 5-yr-old disappeared
HAWKINS COUNTY, TENNESSEE: Five-year-old Summer Moon-Utah Wells of Rogersville, Tennessee, was reported missing on Tuesday, June 15. Now, investigators are looking for the driver of a Toyota pickup truck seen in the rural Hawkins County area where Summer was last seen.
As per her parents, the five-year-old vanished from the basement of their home. Summer’s father Don Wells told reporters that his daughter was engaged in gardening activities with her mother and grandmother and then went inside the home on her own. Wells said his daughter was last spotted around 6.30 pm on June 15, wearing a pink shirt and grey shorts. She may have been barefoot as well, he added.
Missing children cases have unfortunately been on an uptick across the country. Last month 11-year-old Ryan Larsen went missing from his Nebraska home. The autistic child was last seen walking out of La Vista West Elementary School and is yet to be found. Three-month-old Angel Overstreet went missing from her home in West Virginia on May 1. The police are yet to find her and are now searching the pond on her father Shannon Overstreet's property, assuming the worst. And the tragic cases of Cash Gernon of Dallas, Texas, and Samuel Olson of Houston, Texas, have shocked the nation.
As per reports, a Toyota pickup truck was seen in the area of Beech Creek Road and Ben Hill Road in the late afternoon to early evening on either Monday, June 14, or Tuesday, June 15. The pickup is possibly a 1998-2000 maroon or red Toyota Tacoma, with a full bed ladder rack along with white buckets in the truck bed.
While the driver of the truck is yet to be identified, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said that it is asking this driver to contact it. “We would like to speak with you to confirm this information and ask what you may have heard or seen at the time. If you are the driver of this truck, please contact us,” the TBI said on its website. “We want to stress that this individual is not a suspect, but is a potential witness who may have heard or seen something that may help us in our search for Summer.”
The TBI is working alongside the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, and numerous other local and state agencies to locate Summer, who became the subject of a statewide AMBER Alert on Wednesday, June 16.
The TBI said that Summer has blonde hair, blue eyes, stands at three-feet-tall, and weighs approximately 40 pounds. At this time, the circumstances of Summer’s disappearance remain unclear. The TBI said on June 18 that numerous local, state, and federal agencies were working together to find Summer. Teams, it said at the time, had searched approximately 3,000 acres. In addition to air and land searches, ponds and creeks were also being checked. More than 100 agencies have contributed to search efforts.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the TBI at 1-800-TBI-FIND or the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office at 423-272-7121. Tips can be emailed to TipsToTBI@tn.gov.