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911 call leads police, fire crews to resume missing woman search

Wednesday marks one week since Amanda Eller was last seen

The Maui News

Maui police and fire crews restarted their suspended search for missing Haiku woman Amanda Eller on Tuesday, after receiving a 911 call from an area above the Makawao Forest Reserve about possible additional information about the case, Maui police said Wednesday afternoon.

After the call, which police did not provide details of, police and fire personnel responded, with the Fire Department sending a helicopter and rescue crew to search by air and foot. Rescue crews made it up almost 2 miles above the Kahakapao Trail before turning around because of loss of daylight.

The search for the 35-year-old Eller resumed at first light Wednesday. Maui police have brought in additional search dogs from Oahu to assist.

Wednesday marked one week since the physical therapist was last seen. Her white Toyota RAV4 was found in the parking lot of the Makawao Forest Reserve, where friends and family say she loved to run and hike. Officials found her cellphone and wallet inside the car, and her key hidden under the driver’s side front tire. A massive interagency search began on May 9. By Sunday, police and fire had suspended their search but said they would actively pursue any leads.

Volunteers continued the search on Monday, joined by Eller’s parents, sister and best friend, who flew in from overseas and the East Coast.

To date, the Police Department has received numerous tips and information and will continue to follow up with any and all leads, according to a news release.

The public is encouraged to continue to share any information that would assist with the investigation. The case is still classified as a missing person until information is received to indicate otherwise, police said.

“Although we’ve classified this case as a missing person and have no evidence to suggest otherwise, detectives from our Crimes Against Persons Unit are meticulously sorting through all the information and data we’ve obtained to find Ms. Amanda Eller,” said police Assistant Chief Victor Ramos of the Investigative Services Bureau. “In addition, officers attached to our Special Response Team have put in many miles searching the denser sections of the forest reserve. We are grateful for the many tips and bits of information we received from the general public.”

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Eller is asked to immediately call the Maui Police Department at 244-6400 or 911 in an emergency.

Maui Mayor Michael Victorino also issued a statement on Wednesday: “It’s hard to imagine the pain of family and friends of missing hiker Amanda Eller. My hope and prayer is that she is located soon and is safe and sound. Until then, Maui police and firefighters are working diligently to follow up on any new information.”