Authorities release age progression photograph of Dail Dinwiddie
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WACH, AP) - Midlands law enforcement has released a photograph of what Dail Dinwiddie would look like today, hoping to drum up new leads in the case.
Dinwiddie was last seen at Jungle Jim's bar in Columbia's Five Points in September 1994 after attending a U2 concert at Williams-Brice Stadium. She was 23 years old when she vanished. No one has seen or heard from the graduate student since that night.
A SLED forensic artist, using a Photoshop program and images of Dinwiddie's parents, generated an age-progressed photo of what the missing woman look like if she were still alive today at age 43.
"When I looked at Dail, I mean looked at that picture, I thought my goodness it's Dail, it's really her," said Dan Dinwiddie, the woman's father, at a Monday news conference at Columbia Police headquarters.
The family also made a passionate plea to the public asking anyone to come forward with information so they can get some closure after two decades of unanswered questions in Columbia's oldest missing persons case.
"I don't know that Dail is safe or where she is. I don't really think that someone from Mars came here and took her. But someone did," said Dinwiddie's mother, Jean. "Twenty years after the abduction of my child I still cannot rest easy because I don't know where she is."
Columbia Police chief Randy Scott says investigators have followed hundreds of leads into homes and prisons across the country, in the past two decades, but they still don't have enough evidence even to say whether Dinwiddie is alive or dead.
Scott says authorities are not willing to give up on a case that he describes not as a cold case but as an "active" case that still gets tips to this day.
"I'm not willing to say that Dail is deceased," said Scott. "Just like I'm not willing to say any of the cases that we have are until you give me something conclusive."
This new image of Dail Dinwiddie is already posted on the Columbia Police Department's website and will also be pushed worldwide through social media.
The Dinwiddie family also released their phone number to the public so they can get information from members of the public who may be reluctant to talk to police. They urge people to call them at 803-254-1690.
"We ask that even if you will not help us solve this crime would you please let us know how to find Dail?" said Jean Dinwiddie. "With the help of all of you all and the public, we will do this."
On Monday, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott also offered a $20,000 reward for any information leading to some resolution in the Dinwiddie case.
Authorities are asking anyone with information in the Dail Dinwiddie disappearance to call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.