FBI releases photo of vehicle linked to Alexis Murphy abduction - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

FBI releases photo of vehicle linked to Alexis Murphy abduction

A late model GMC Suburban driven by Randy Taylor (Source: FBI) A late model GMC Suburban driven by Randy Taylor (Source: FBI)
Randy Taylor (Source: FBI) Randy Taylor (Source: FBI)

The FBI released a picture of a vehicle Monday in the ongoing search for a missing Nelson County 17-year-old.

Agents also confirmed the arrest of 48-year-old Randy Taylor of Lovingston Sunday in the case. He was charged Sunday night with abducting Alexis Murphy. However, there is still no sign of Alexis.

In a brief press conference Monday, agents asked anyone with information on Taylor or his late model GMC Suburban-like truck with Virginia plates to call police. Officials did not answer any questions about the case.

Murphy's mother said Monday would have been Murphy's first day back at school and tearfully pleaded for help in locating her daughter.

FBI agents are scouring a property off Route 29 in Lovingston, not too far south of Charlottesville. An active FBI investigation unfolded just after that arrest was announced. NBC29 in Charlottesville reports that agents are specifically targeting a property near the Cannery Loop. Investigators completely blocked off a property. A number of large, unmarked vehicles were seen at the site and investigators worked the scene into the night. There is no word on whether agents are searching for Alexis Murphy, or clues in her case.

NBC29 has reported that police searched that same area off Route 29, along with homes, last Monday and Friday. Neighbors say investigators tracked Alexis's last cell phone activity to the Lovingston area, as well.

Meanwhile, Alexis's family says the arrest is a bittersweet development in her abduction.

"Exciting. Obviously, very bittersweet to know that they have a suspect, but Alexis isn't home yet. But a jolt of energy, hope and faith," said Angela Taylor, Alexis's aunt.

"It's been determined that she really was abducted, and we have a suspect and they're in custody, that's major," said another aunt, Trina Taylor.

On Saturday of this past weekend, FBI agents were showing pictures of a man to businesses owners in Charlottesville. No word on how that man is connected to the case, if at all. Days before that, surveillance pictures surfaced of Alexis at a gas station. Investigators also found Alexis's car outside a movie theater in Albemarle County, Tuesday. Dogs had tracked Alexis's scent to nearby apartments.

However, there is still no sign of Alexis, as her family and an entire community continue to pray for her return. For that community, the new school year begins first thing Monday morning. School staff are preparing to help Alexis' classmates deal with this difficult situation.

"What we will try to do is help try to help each individual student… work through it and use our guidance counselors to help them…They will be available to come to school on Monday," said Principal Todd Weidow. Weidow says he expects emotions to be high.

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