Friends, family hold search for missing Australian 

Alison Leanne Raspa has not been seen since Nov. 22

click to enlarge PHOTO COURTESY OF THE WHISTLER RCMP - Alison Leanne Raspa has been missing since Nov. 22.
  • Photo courtesy of the Whistler RCMP
  • Alison Leanne Raspa has been missing since Nov. 22.

A search party scoured Alpha Lake Park today, looking for any sign of Alison Leanne Raspa.

The 25-year-old Australian national has been missing since Wednesday, Nov. 22.

Raspa's brother - who has come to Whistler to find his sister - took part in the search.

A group of people met at the Village Gondola at 9:00 a.m. and walked to the park, where they searched the forested areas that surround Alpha Lake.

It was an emotional, somber event.

At the end, Raspa's brother, Steve Raspa, thanked the group. "Thank you for searching for my sister," he said.

There were nine people in total, including three members of Whistler Community Services Society. No additional signs were found.

Visibly upset, Steve Raspa and other searchers declined to be interviewed.

Alison Leanne Raspa, 25, was last spotted leaving the Three Below Restaurant at approximately 11:30 p.m. on Nov. 22.

According to Whistler RCMP, her cell phone was found in the park the morning, at 6:30 a.m., in Alpha Lake Park.

That has led authorities to focus their search on Alpha Lake Park.

In an interview with Pique today, Staff Sgt. Paul Hayes revealed that police have since recovered Raspa's backpack and jacket.

"We do have what we believe to be her backpack and her jacket," said Hayes.

Hayes would not specify where it was found, saying that it was in the "same general area" as the phone. '

Finding the bag and jacket "doesn't change the course of the investigation," he said.

The RCMP does not believe foul play was involved in Raspa's disappearance, said Hayes.

The RCMP will continue to search Alpha Lake Park, said Hayes, and divers will return this weekend after last scouring the lake last Sunday. If the weather cooperates, police will have "air support."

"We're still trying to fill gaps in the timeline between when (Raspa) was last seen and when we located her personal belongings," said Hayes, who encourages the public to come forward if they saw anything suspicious.

Police believe that Raspa likely got a ride between the Village and Creekside.

"The odds are she got a ride as opposed to walk because it's like seven kilometres," said Hayes, who added that it could have been by public transit or a vehicle.

Raspa, who has long brown hair and blue eyes, was last seen wearing a black jacket, black-and-white striped shirt, and black pants.

If you have any information, please contact Whistler RCMP at 604-932-3044.



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