Indiana Daily Student

Sketch of Behrman suspect released by BPD

New lead in three-and-a-half-month old case yields suspect sketch

After nearly three and a half months of searching for sophomore Jill Behrman, authorities and her family still don't know where she is.\nBut there is some hope in the case. \nBloomington Police Department has released a sketch of a man who might be connected to Behrman's May disappearance.\nThe man in the composite is accused of attempting to kidnap two women outside the Bigfoot convenience store at Ind. 46 and Sale Street in Ellettsville. Police believe the first incident occurred June 13, when the suspect tried to grab a woman outside the store and force her into his truck. He ran toward another female outside the Bigfoot store while talking to her Aug. 10 and tailed her for a short distance.\nBoth women escaped and told police, who made a sketch of the suspect. The two physical descriptions given by the women were similar, but the victim who was accosted in August noticed that her potential kidnapper had a scar with stitches above his left eyebrow. Police are looking for a white man in his thirties with short, light brown hair and a muscular build.\nBoth women said a black pick-up truck with a camper shell was in the Bigfoot parking lot at the time the man in the sketch confronted them. The police announced Aug. 16 that they were seeking information about a dark pick-up truck that was spotted in the parking lot of St. Paul's Catholic Center Church. \nAuthorities were interested in the truck because a walkman resembling one that Behrman used on bicycle rides was discovered after it left the parking lot. Investigators do not know if the truck in the church lot and the Bigfoot lot are the same.\nCapt. Bill Parker of the BPD said, "There is nothing to indicate that the man is or is not involved in the disappearance of Jill Behrman. If he is caught, we will see if he has an alibi on the day Jill disappeared, but right now we are trying to investigate and find out who he is and go from there."\nBehrman was last seen on May 31 at about 9:30 a.m. riding her bicycle at the intersection of Harrell Road and Moffett Lane in Bloomington. Her Cannondale R500 bike was found along North Maple Grove Road later. Some witnesses claimed to have seen a bike rider there at about 10:30 a.m. on the day Behrman disappeared. \nSince the Behrman investigation began, police have received close to 2,000 leads, although none have provided major help.\nAccording to "The Search for Jill Behrman" Web site, the community has rallied behind Behrman's family. Besides several search party ventures, which included one Sept, 10, other events to support and help the Behrmans will take place soon. \nOn Behrman's Sept. 17 birthday, the First United Methodist Church, at Fourth and Washington streets, will have a prayer service for her family at 12:30 p.m. followed by lunch.\nAlso, three "Take Back the Night" functions, which will protest crimes against women, are scheduled over a two-day period. A Take Back the Night candlelight vigil will be Sept. 20 at Showalter Fountain at 7 p.m. Twenty-four hours later, a Take Back the Night rally and march will begin in Dunn Meadow and end at the Monroe County Courthouse. The Jill Behrman Run for the End Zone, sponsored by the IU Division of Recreational Sports, will be Oct. 7. \nAll the money earned will go to the $50,000 reward being offered for information leading the arrest of the person responsible for Behrman's disappearance.\nEric Behrman, Jill's father and an IU Alumni Association employee, said he was appreciative of the efforts made on his family's behalf.\n"We are grateful for all the help and support given to us by all of our friends and co-workers at the IU Alumni Association, the IU Foundation and throughout the University," he said.\n"The support given to us by the community and friends has been unbelievable ... we are concerned that the person(s) involved in this abduction may still be here in the Bloomington area. We don't want to see anything like this happen again to anyone else here in our community." \nParker gave advice for anyone who is harassed by the suspect in the sketch.\n"Go straight to the nearest business and ask for help. So far both the incidents in Ellettsville were outside the Bigfoot store," Parker said.\nHe also recommended that young people, especially women, travel in numbers whenever possible.\n"Many of the traditional warnings are not so applicable as Jill was riding on a public road in broad daylight, but of course it is generally safer to stay in a group," Parker added\nAnyone with information regarding the suspect is urged to call 349-3331. Tips on Jill Behrman's whereabouts should go to 349-3313.

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