SAN FRANCISCO, California (Isabelle Zehnder reporting) — While the search for the missing “at-risk” Danville teen intensified Wednesday her friends and supporters were organizing a prayer vigil for Wednesday evening (info about the prayer vigil below.)
[UPDATE:]. California Highway Patrol Capt. Amy Mangan said it is believed Alliy jumped to her death. Mangan said:
“We have information that came to us in our search and rescue efforts yesterday as well as our investigative efforts that indicate that Allison walked out onto the Golden Gate Bridge shortly after 10 a.m. on Monday morning. It does not appears that Allison walked off the Golden Gate Bridge. Our investigative efforts now is moving toward a possible suicide.”
Fifteen-year-old Allison “Alliy” Bayliss, a sophomore at San Ramon Valley High School, was last seen leaving the school on her bike early Monday morning. She hasn’t been seen since. Police quickly found notes she left on her computer where she resesarched BART schedules and airlines. She also left a suicide note, and notes to friends and family.
Alliy’s family is calling for volunteers to come join in the search for Alliy. Information about agencies involved in the search, as well as where to go to help, can be found below.
A photo of Alliy getting off on an esclator at BART’s Embarcadero Station caught on surveillance video was distributed Wednesday (see slide show, left side bar.) She was seen wearing head phones while listening to what her friend believes was her blue iPod Nano and holding onto her bike. Upon seeing the photo, Neda Hefzi posted on the FIND ALLIY BAYLISS Facebook page, “This just brought me to tears.”
As precious time passes and the search intensifies Facebook pages are being created by people hoping to spread the word of her disappearance. Some of those pages are already being sabotaged by “trolls,” which is common in missing persons’ cases. More on this below.
Friends, family, and supporters are wearing blue ribbons, Alliy’s favorite color.
Search for Alliy
Alliy’s aunt, Maura White, posted Wednesday morning that volunteers who want to help search for Alliy can go to the Command Center to help.
The center is located at: Battery East Parking Lot, 958 Lincoln Blvd at the SE corner of the Golden Gate Bridge (San Francisco side.)
The search for Alliy moved to San Francisco late Monday night and early Tuesday after finding suicide notes and notes about BART and airlines on her computer.
Several agencies, including local police, National Park Service rangers, U.S. Park Police, San Francisco Police, and the U.S. Coast Guard joined in the search Monday and Tuesday. Maddy Gillette posted on the FIND ALLIY BAYLISS Facebook page that she believes Danville Police Search and Rescue are involved in the search, and that the California Highway Patrol has brought in their helicopter. She said San Francisco Police, too, may have brought in a helicopter to assist in the search.
Alliy’s father and his friend were searching when they found Alliy’s black, white, and purple mountain bike locked to a rack at about 4:45 a.m. Tuesday morning in the Battery East parking lot of the bridge. Her helmet was with her bike.
Tips and leads
There are a couple ways people can provide leads and tips.
Via text: Send a text 6462441
Via phone: Call Contra Costa Police (925) 646-2441
If you want to receive updates about the case send a text to 6462441 and put “Allison” in the body of the text.
A prayer vigil is planned for Wednesday, May 25 from 7 to 8 p.m. It will be held at the Danville Congregational Church located at 989 San Ramon Valley Blvd., Danville, CA 94526.
Alliy’s aunt, Maura White, wrote in an email this morning that not everyone can attend the prayer vigil because they are not geographically able. She said that two “virtual prayer circles” have been praying for Alliy: “Praying People” (by Revd Mark Brown) and “Circle of Prayer.”
Facebook page issues
Administrators are asking that people go to the new Facebook page “FIND ALLIY BAYLISS” and join the group to receive updates and provide support for Alliy and her family. Click here for the new page.
Friends of Alliy’s set up a Facebook page to provide updates and support for Alliy and her family. The page, with nearly 10,000 members, was shut down due to “trolls” attacking the page.
One poster to the new site questioned why administrators would shut down the original page. Jeannine Henderson said, “The trolling was too out of control.”
Turner Stanton said, “Comments/images were getting way out of hand and there was no way the original creator was going to be able to keep the site clean. We must keep in mind that Alliy could seen the event and any hurtful comments would be horrible for her to see.”
Jack Messerly said, “They were posting pornography.”
Maddy Gillette said, “It was doing more harm than good, so we decided that it was time to shut it down. Unfortunately once you get over 10,000 wonderful people you’re certain to find a few awful ones who ruin things for everybody.”
Evelyn Boxley, a member of the new Facebook page, said, “Admin you are doing a great job. The numbers on the other sight were heartwarming and amazing. Please don’ t be discouraged. Those 10,000 people are still out there praying and still with you all!”
While Facebook pages are a great tool for helping to keep the public informed, provide support for the missing and their families, and help find the missing, they can also be time-consuming and frustrating – especially since people who set them up are likely not aware that this is a problem in nearly, if not all missing persons’ cases that take to Facebook.
Administrators of some missing persons’ Facebook pages are forced to spend many hours each day monitoring the pages, keeping attacks to a minimum, and controlling “troll” activity.
“Trolls” often cut to the core of the friends and family of the missing, making negative and hurtful comments, and attempting to take over the pages.
It is hoped that at some point Facebook will address this issue and find a reasonable resolution.
Name: Allison “Alliy” Bayliss
Date missing: 5/23/2011
Weight: 130 pounds
Eye color: Blue
Hair: Brownish-blonde, long, often worn in pony tail
Last seen wearing: Red zippered hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans; one green, one yellow flip-flop; may have been carrying a blue backpack and wearing grey mittens
For more on this story read:
Alliy Bayliss: Police, volunteers search for missing 15-yr-old at-risk Danville teen
Alliy Bayliss: Search for missing teen moves to SF, bike found near GG Bridge
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Source: SF Gate