(NewsNation Now) — It has been five months and there is still no sign of 5-year-old Summer Wells, but new activity in the investigation could mean progress in the case.
On Tuesday, 12 law enforcement agencies showed up in Tennessee to search in overgrown areas. There were also 120 dogs involved in the search, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
The Tennessee girl’s parents reported her missing the evening of June 15, when she disappeared from their Hawkins County home in rural Northeast Tennessee.
On that afternoon, Summer was helping her mother and grandmother plant flowers. She then reportedly went into the house, where her brothers were playing.
No one has been labeled a person of interest in the case, but both parents have been under a cloud of suspicion. Summer’s mother, Candus Bly, walked off the “Dr. Phil” show several weeks ago when she was questioned by two investigators.
In a statement released by the parents seeking to explain her abrupt departure, they said shortly before going on the show, the family was informed authorities were tracking a girl who may have been Summer. However, right before taping the “Dr. Phil” show, they were told it was not their daughter.
“It was like losing [Summer] all over again,” the statement said.
Law enforcement said Tuesday’s search did not net any leads but defended their work on the case — which has been slammed on social media as insufficient. Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said misinformation has flooded the internet and said even though operations have been scaled back, they will never give up.
“Despite what you see on social media, we’ve looked everywhere, we’ve done everything we know to do that is humanly possible,” Lawson said. “We’re all-in. All agencies working as a great team, a great partnership, and we hope to find Summer. That’s our number one goal.”