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Vi Ripken kidnapping suspect sketch
A 2012 sketch released by the Aberdeen Police Department of the man who allegedly kidnapped Vi Ripken.

Search for Vi Ripken’s kidnapper continues

Dave McKenna at Deadspin has a fascinating update on the investigation into who kidnapped Vi Ripken from her Aberdeen home more than two-and-a-half years ago.

The case is still an open investigation, led by Det. John Divel of the Aberdeen Police Department, which has hosted periodic meetings with other law enforcement officials to update the status of the case.

“But those gatherings have become less frequent as the supply of fresh information and unpursued investigative angles has dwindled to nothing,” McKenna writes.

If the investigation gets suspended, McKenna continues, Divel could release to the public all of the information he has. And what information does he have?

There are now ‘several thousand pages’ in the Aberdeen Police Department’s Ripken file, Divel says, almost all of them from early in the investigation. He describes the file as full of unreleased photos and videos of the guy they’ve tabbed as the no-goodnik, including visual evidence from three fast-food drive-thru lanes taken during the kidnapping, and says that surveillance film from those eateries shows the suspect driving Ripken’s car and her in the backseat.

… A formal request for reports and records relating to the Ripken investigation filed with the Records Office of the Aberdeen police department returned just two documents: a 2012 press release, and a 2013 press release.

‘I know: It’s been two years. Why not just release it all?’ Divel says. He didn’t answer the question.

McKenna also notes some people doubt, based on the “bizzare and cliched nature” of the case, whether Ripken ever was kidnapped. He quotes a source close to the Orioles expressing a “common, if softly whispered sentiment” that the kidnapping is a “little on the bogus side.”

There is still a $100,000 reward for anyone with information that leads to the capture of Ripken’s kidnapper.

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