Toledo police are still waiting for results of DNA testing on human hair found in the Maumee River weeks after the disappearance of toddler Elaina Steinfurth.
Sergeant Joe Heffernan told HLN Monday that tests confirmed quickly that the tuft of hair discovered by a fisherman in the river was human, but the DNA tests to determine whether it is Elaina’s hair will take two or three more weeks.
Police sent divers back into the river last week, but “it was to no avail,” according to Heffernan.
Authorities had also searched the water extensively earlier in the investigation.
18-month-old Elaina Steinfurth was reported missing on June 2 when her mother claimed the girl disappeared from the home of her ex-boyfriend’s family after she put her down for a nap. Elaina’s mother, Angela Steinfurth, has been indicted on a charge of obstructing justice in connection with the case and has pleaded not guilty.
Heffernan said other search efforts have continued over the last week.
“We’ve been continuing to go full-on with the investigation here,” he said. “We have an enormous amount of manpower invested in this.”
Heffernan confirmed a Toledo Free Press report that a second fisherman also claimed to have found strands of hair in the Maumee River in late June, but he said test results have not come back on that evidence yet.
Meanwhile, as the investigation of Elaina’s disappearance enters its second month, civilian search organizers have expressed concern that the number of volunteers has been dropping.
Right now we don't have any leads. So we're just searching anywhere we possibly can," searcher Tiffany Lewis told WTOL Saturday.