A former FBI agent who liaises with missing woman Annie McCarrick’s family said he remains confident the case can be solved.
Enneth Strange is a private detective in California and a family friend of the McCarricks.
He asked that the case of McCarrick, who disappeared 29 years ago this week from his home in Dublin, be turned into a murder investigation.
Ms McCarrick was originally from Long Island in the US and had traveled here to study, living in Sandymount in Dublin with two friends.
On Friday, March 26, 1993, the 27-year-old left her home for a walk in County Wicklow and disappeared without a trace.
Mr Strange, who traveled here last September to retrace Annie’s final stages as he investigated her family’s case, said: ‘When someone goes missing and they are part of kind of a series of women going missing and there’s no evidence and it’s all in the same area, so I’d say we’re talking about murder.
He thinks Gardaí should turn the case into a murder investigation.
“If upgrading means putting more resources and more man hours into it and thinking a lot more about it, I would say yes, I would be all for it.
“Certainly it would be beneficial and I’m all for whatever solves the case.”
Mr Strange said he remained confident there could be a breakthrough in the case.
“I have followed cases like this and even after many, many years something can happen,” he said.
“Someone remembers something, someone reveals something or maybe a body is discovered in a field – some hunting dogs find bones or something.
“So I like to keep the faith. I hope something positive will come and I think it will.
Gardaí says the investigation into Annie McCarrick’s disappearance remains open and active.
Convicted rapist Larry Murphy of Co Wicklow remains a person of interest in her disappearance.
Murphy was jailed for 15 years for the February 2000 kidnapping, rape and attempted murder of a woman. He was released in 2010 after serving 10½ years behind bars, and is now believed to have he lives in the UK.
The Wicklow carpenter has been ruled out of any involvement in the cases of other missing women, including Ciara Breen, Fiona Pender and Fiona Sinnott.
But Garda’s Operation Trace which was set up to investigate the disappearance concluded there was circumstantial evidence linking it to the disappearances of Jo Jo Dullard, Annie McCarrick and Deride Jacob.
Mrs Jacob (18) was last seen near her home in Roseberry, Newbridge, Co Kildare at around 3pm on July 28, 1998.
Earlier in the day, she had left the house around 1 p.m. to drive to Newbridge. She was seen at the AIB bank on Main Street at 2.20pm before crossing the street and heading to the post office at 2.30pm.
The latest CCTV footage of her was recorded from an Irish permanent office on Main Street as she walked back towards her home.
Ms Jacob’s disappearance was officially treated by the gardaí as a missing person’s case until August 2018, when it was officially upgraded to a murder investigation.
The decision to reclassify the case followed the emergence of new information, which led the gardaí to open new avenues of investigation.
It was while serving his 10-year sentence, mostly at Arbor Hill prison, that it is suspected that Murphy confessed to the murder of Ms Jacob to another inmate while in state of drunk.
Murphy became a person of interest after it emerged he had visited the store owned by Ms Jacob’s grandmother.
CCTV footage from the day Ms Jacob disappeared has been digitized, allowing new witnesses to be identified from the clearer video.
During an interview with gardaí in prison, Murphy denied any involvement in his disappearance.
Gardaí traveled to Britain in 2018 and, together with London Metropolitan Police, attempted to question Murphy, but he refused to answer questions.
Investigators followed 3,500 investigative leads, collected more than 2,000 statements and carried out numerous searches to find the student who had been missing since 1998.
A major search operation was carried out in a remote forest last year as part of the investigation into the murder of Deirdre Jacob.
The operation at a site in Taggartstown, Co Kildare, is less than 15km from Baltinglass, where convicted rapist Murphy lived at the time of his disappearance.
However, the three-week search operation ended with no new evidence found.
Last October, Ms Dullard’s case was upgraded to murder. The 21-year-old disappeared from Moone, County Kildare in 1995. She had been working in Callan, County Kilkenny, and had traveled to Dublin on November 9 that year.
She missed the last direct bus home that evening, so she took a bus to Naas, then took two elevators to Moone.
While she was in a phone booth in Moone to tell a friend where she was, a car pulled up for her. That was the last anyone heard of her.
The status of the case was changed to murder following a review by the Major Crimes Review Team.