WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Searchers gather again, police seek info about people seen on trail
The Alexandria Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating people seen with 15-year-old Jasmine Block the day before she went missing from her home in a mobile home park on North McKay Avenue late Tuesday, Aug. 8.
According to the media release, Jasmine was seen about 1 p.m. Monday, Aug. 7, on the Central Lakes Trail in the area of Burger King and Super America at Third Avenue and Nokomis Street. According to witnesses, she was with two other teenagers and a man who appeared to be in his 30s and was balding or had closely shaven hair. They were all reported to have been riding bikes and it is believed these people may have been from out of town.
Police ask anyone who spent time with Jasmine in the days leading up to her disappearance to contact them.
According to the release, “We have many gaps in our timeline and are asking that if you had spent any time with Jasmine or seen her in the two days prior to her disappearance that you contact us so we can account for Jasmine’s whereabouts.”
A search was conducted by Jasmine’s friends and family on Wednesday, Aug. 16. Among the search volunteers was Kevin Taylor, director of Youth for Christ, which is a non-denominational, non-profit youth group that Jasmine was a part of.
“She was just a quirky kid,” he said. “Her smile was infectious. She was usually pretty happy, but she had her struggles. She was just like any other teenage girl struggling with life, figuring out who she is, where she belongs, what it is that she wanted out of life.”
Taylor says Jasmine’s disappearance has been difficult for the adults and kids who know her through Youth for Christ and that he plans to stay involved with search efforts until Jasmine is home.
“It’s been a hard thing to deal with because it’s a kid we know personally and someone we’re close to,” he said. “She’s been in and out of our center, my youth group, all of that.”
A candlelight vigil and prayer service will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18, at New Life Christian Church in Alexandria. Another search will be held Saturday, Aug. 19, at 3 p.m. at Big Ole Central Park. An account for donations to help the search effort has been set up at MidMinnesota Federal Credit Union in Alexandria.
Jasmine’s mother is offering a $1,000 reward for the safe return of her daughter.
“I would like to thank the community and law enforcement for all the support and help,” said Sarah Block, Jasmine’s mother. “I will not stop until Jasmine is home safe.”
Jasmine is described as white with a tan complexion, 5-foot-1, 110 lbs, with brown curly hair. According to fliers, she has a recent bruise near the right side of her ribcage, scars on her left arm, a scar on her left ankle and a mole on her left cheek. She was last seen wearing black and red pajama pants and a top.
Jasmine’s cell phone was left behind, according to her mother.
An alert from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension states that Jasmine has cognitive disabilities that make her vulnerable, which has authorities concerned for her welfare.
Anyone who knows of Jasmine’s whereabouts or sees her is asked to call the Alexandria Police Department at 320-763-6631 or call 911.