Hollister police early Thursday recovered a vehicle engulfed in flames that belongs to a 25-year-old Hollister woman who was reported missing Wednesday after she failed to pick up her child and others from school.
At about 2:10 a.m. Thursday, police and firefighters responded to a report of a vehicle fire near Enterprise Road and Glenview Drive. Police recovered the tan Sequoia sport utility vehicle belonging to Heather Alaina Carroll of Hollister.
Investigators concluded, with evidence at the scene, that the SUV was unoccupied at the time of the fire. It has been stored at the Hollister Police Department for forensic analysis, according to a statement from police.
Carroll was last seen Wednesday morning when she dropped off her child at Ladd Lane School, according to police. Family and friends became concerned when she did not pick up her child or others she was scheduled to pick up at the school in the afternoon – and noted to police that it was out of character for Carroll.
The state Department of Justice is processing the crime scene and evidence, said interim Police Chief David Westrick. There was no other apparent evidence of any other crime at the scene outside of the arson, he said.
Westrick said it was too early in the investigation to conclude foul play was involved and said police have talked to “a number of people” regarding her possible whereabouts.
“I should note that we have asked for some resources from the sheriff’s department and we’re evaluating whether we can utilize their personnel or resources,” Westrick said.
The Hollister Police Department also is asking for anyone in the area of Enterprise Road and Glenview Drive last night around 2 a.m. to call police if they noticed anything suspicious.
Carroll is described as 5 feet, 5 inches tall and 130 pounds; with reddish, wavy hair and brown eyes.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Carroll is asked to call the Hollister Police Department at (831) 636-4331 or 911. People wishing to remain anonymous may call WeTIP at (800) 78-CRIME. Information provided to WeTip may result in an award of up to $1,000.