Relatives of Leanne Bearden, who went missing in Garden Ridge two weeks ago today, are coming to the conclusion that she simply ran away, 1200 WOAI's Michael Board reports.
On January 17th, the 33 year old Denver woman left her in-laws home in the leafy Metrocom suburb to 'go for a walk.' When she did not return four hours later, her husband Joshua Bearden called police. There have been several massive searchers for her over the past two weeks, including a major search last Saturday which covered a 23 square mile area, and involved the Texas Rangers, the Texas Guard, and a professional search team.
But Will Bearden, Leanne's father in law, told 1200 WOAI news all signs are beginning to point to her running off.
"We know that she was going through some stress after returning from her world trip and having to get back into life, and we are thinking that she left voluntarily," Bearden said.
Private investigator Charlie Parker, who was hired by the family after police said they found no evidence of foul play and said they would lead no more searches, is coming to a similar conclusion.
Leanne and Joshua had sold most of their possessions, rented out their home in Denver, and had just completed a 22 month round the world trip. The reason they were in Live Oak at Bearden's parents home is they were waiting for the tenants in their Denver home to move out, and the plan was to return to Denver and resume their careers as sales representatives.
Bearden says another indication that Leanne disappeared voluntarily is a driver on Highway 3009 saw a woman who matches her description walking toward I-35 right after she was last seen by a landscaper walking away from the Garden Ridge home.
"He made eye contact with her, he heard about the missing, and thought it was probably her, and he turned around, but by the time he got back there, she was gone," he said.
Relatives say the 33 year old woman said she was stressed about returning to her normal life following her adventure.
Leanne had $60 in cash and some credit cards with her when she was last seen, but she did not have a cell phone, or anything that would allow her to be able to survive for very long, especially with the temperatures falling into the low twenties for several nights since she has been missing.
Police have said they had no indications that her credit cards have been used.
It is not a crime for an adult to run away, but the groups involved in the search could file a civil lawsuit against her to recover the costs of the search operations.