Public’s help sought finding missing El Monte woman

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From reporter Daniel Tedford:

COMMERCE – Investigators called on the public on Friday to help find an El Monte woman who went missing more than a week ago under suspicious circumstances.

Maria Chavez, 39, was last seen May 7 at 8:45 p.m. after leaving her shop at an indoor swap meet in East Los Angeles.

She was in her 1998 champagne colored Honda Accord. The car was later found abandoned on the side of the road on the 17000 block of Pacific Coast Highway in Los Angeles.

“We really need the public’s assistance to help find Maria,” said Lt. Dave Dolson at a press conference Friday.

Detectives suspect foul play in Chavez’s disappearance, but declined to elaborate.

Chavez was described as a devoted single mother. She has a young daughter, and her disappearance is out of character, police and relatives said.

Police have been in contact with the father of her child, but have no suspects.

“All leads are being followed,” Dolson said.

Family members of Chavez attended Friday’s press conference. They included her two brothers, a sister and a friend of the family.

One brother, with a wavering voice and tears, requested the public’s help in finding his sister.

* Above: Photo of Maria Chavez courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

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