SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Police Department is “sparing no assets or resources” in trying to find a 3-year-old girl who disappeared at a Northwest Side apartment complex Monday evening, Chief William McManus said.
McManus said officers are searching every unit and car at the Villas Del Cabo complex in the 9400 block of Fredericksburg Road, where Lina Sardar Khil was last seen.
Please share: Missing Child Case @ 9400 Fredericksburg Rd SAPD continues an active & all hands on deck search for missing child, Lina Sardar Khi. At this time, we continue to ask for the public’s assistance in providing any information on Lina’s whereabouts to call 210-207-7660 pic.twitter.com/IimRY6Du8G— San Antonio PD (@SATXPolice) December 21, 2021
Lina was at a playground at the apartment complex with her mother and other children between 5-6 p.m. when her mother left and returned to find her daughter missing, the chief said in a news conference Tuesday morning.
It is unclear exactly how long the mother was away, but McManus said she returned a “short time later.” McManus said the girl wasn’t left alone and there were other kids at the playground, which is open within the complex.
The family reported the child missing around 7:15 p.m., and an AMBER Alert was issued.
Officers searched the area by foot and air Monday but did not locate her. SAPD continued their search Tuesday morning and asked the FBI for assistance.
Officers are going door by door to each apartment — there are under 300 units in the complex — to search for Lina.
Officers are also searching for video, checking cars and dumpsters, and recording license plates due to the “suspicious nature of the disappearance,” he added.
“We have every available asset in the police department working on the case right now,” he said, adding that “we are sparing no assets or resources.”
Officers are also trying to identify the other people at the playground Monday evening.
So far, the mother and residents have been cooperative, McManus said.
“Nobody comes and goes without talking to a police officer,” he said.
SAPD will set up a command post at the nearby USAA headquarters if the search extends past Tuesday, McManus said.
Lina was wearing a black jacket, red dress and black shoes when she disappeared.
A flyer distributed by police says she is 4 feet tall, weighs 55 pounds and had her shoulder-length hair in a ponytail.
Police also conducted a thorough search of the area late Monday but did not find the child.
Police say they have not located any witnesses who were able to offer any information on a possible suspect.
However, according to their news release, they are handling this as an abduction case.
Earlier Tuesday, an SAPD sergeant said there has been a bit of a language barrier between officers and the girl’s mother. They brought an interpreter to help with the communication.
Margaret Constantino with the Center for Refugee Services confirmed to KSAT that the child’s family is among the Afghanistan refugees in San Antonio.
At least 1,300 people from Afghanistan have come through the Center for Refugee Services for resettling here.
While she knows very little about the family, Constantino says any missing child is everyone’s missing child.
“And like any big family with lots and lots of little kids, all of these children are precious to us,” she said. “Knowing this community, they’re very close-knit. So people will be out there beating the bushes, looking for this child.”
Anyone with information about her disappearance is asked to call SAPD’s missing person unit at 210-207-7660.