Investigators trying to identify man in connection with Maddie Bell’s disappearance

Investigators trying to identify man in connection with Maddie Bell’s disappearance
Investigators are seeking to identify this man, whom they believe has information about Madison Bell's disappearance. (Source: Highland County Sheriff's Office)

GREENFIELD, Ohio (FOX19) - The Highland County Sheriff Office released several photos Thursday in connection with the disappearance of Madison Bell.

Bell, who goes by ‘Maddie,’ left her house in Greenfield, Ohio on Sunday afternoon and did not return.

As she left her house, Maddie’s mother says she told her she was going to a tanning appointment. Her boyfriend, Cody Mann, told FOX19 NOW Tuesday he was there as well.

Investigators say they found her car abandoned in a church parking lot with her keys and cell phone left inside later that day.

Investigators released a photo of the man shown above Thursday afternoon seeking to identify him. They say he may have information related to Bell’s disappearance.

FOX19 NOW asked Maddie’s parents Thursday if they recognize the man in the photo. They say they do not, though Mann says he feels like he’s seen the man before, he just doesn’t know where.

The red car belongs to Bell and is in investigators’ possession, according to the sheriff’s office. The white car is being sought in connection with her disappearance. Investigators believe it may have California tags.

Bell's car was found abandoned in a church parking lot.
Bell's car was found abandoned in a church parking lot. (Source: Highland County Sheriff's Office)
The sheriff's office released this picture of a white car in connection to missing 18-year-old Maddie Bell.
The sheriff's office released this picture of a white car in connection to missing 18-year-old Maddie Bell. (Source: Highland County Sheriff's Office)

In the time since Bell’s disappearance, volunteers have descended upon Highland County and fanned out across the region, disbursing flyers as far away as Kentucky.

The FBI has joined in the search as well.

Texas EquuSearch said they are scaling back the search on Thursday, but a drone is up and dogs are out searching.

A big search is expected to be held on Saturday.

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Heather Parker says she and Maddie grew up together and both cheered at McClain High School.

“It means we get closer to Maddie and bringing her home,” Parker says of investigators releasing the photo.

Parker and her classmates celebrated their senior class with a graduation parade Thursday just as the photo was release. Many of the cars had ‘Bring Maddie Home’ written on them.

“A lot of them are upset," Greenfield Councilman Eric Borini said of Maddie’s classmates, “But I know they also have that optimism that she’ll come home and be found.”

Asked if it would be like Maddie to skip town, Parker replied, “No, that is not like her at all.”

Parker went on to describe Maddie: “Her sense of humor is probably the greatest thing about there. Her personality is so bubbly. Her smile is so contagious, she’s just a bright and bubbly person.”

“We hope and pray she comes back soon,” Borini said. “We love and we miss her.”

Investigators said still no one has seen or heard from Maddie.

Anyone with information on her disappearance is being asked to call the hotline at 844.727.9111 or the Highland County Sheriff’s Office at 937.393.1421.

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