Parents of missing woman ask Rep. Condit to talk again to police
WASHINGTON (AP) – The parents of a missing California woman last seen in Washington seven weeks ago urged Rep. Gary Condit to share whatever he knows that could help determine what happened to her. Condit, in a statement, said he would.
Dr. Robert Levy and his wife, Susan, wiped away tears during a news conference Thursday with their newly hired attorney, Billy Martin, who spoke for them.
”Congressman Condit has acknowledged that he is a friend of Chandra Levy. We ask the congressman and all other friends who have any information … to please come forward, please cooperate with police,” said Martin, a former federal prosecutor whose other clients included Monica Lewinsky’s mother.
Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey said Condit is not a suspect in the disappearance. But police want to interview the California Democrat a second time because he, like other people who know Levy, could have ”some insight or information that could lead us to find her.”
Chandra Levy, 24, of Modesto, Calif., disappeared a few days after finishing an internship with the federal Bureau of Prisons in Washington.
Condit, who represents Modesto, has described Levy as a ”good friend” and has contributed $10,000 from his campaign funds to a reward. He issued a short statement late Thursday, after Martin and the Levys met with Ramsey.
”Anyone who saw Dr. and Mrs. Levy today at their press conference cannot help but feel their deep concern and worry,” Condit said. ”If there is any new information I can provide, I will do so without hesitation.”
Mike Lynch, Condit’s chief of staff in Modesto, said Condit wants to talk to police again and is trying to work out a time.
Mrs. Levy previously had said her daughter told her she was seeing Condit, who is married. However, Martin would not describe the nature of that relationship Thursday.
”We hope that during the investigation we can really find out the depth of that relationship, what it was,” he said.
Levy was last seen April 30 at a Washington gym. She was expected to return to California a few days later for her graduation from the University of Southern California with a master’s degree in public administration.
When police searched her apartment, they found no signs of foul play. Only her keys were missing.
Martin said the parents do not believe their daughter ”just walked away” and would like police to upgrade their investigation ”to something beyond a missing person investigation.”
Ramsey declined to change the status of the case, saying the 15- to 20-minute meeting with the Levys produced no new information.
”Unfortunately, there’s really nothing new that leads us any closer to finding her,” Ramsey said.
Martin said two former Washington homicide detectives who now work for his law firm would help conduct an investigation separate from that of the police.
Mrs. Levy, her husband by her side, read a short statement outside the police station but did not take questions.
”We are very heartbroken that we do not know where our daughter is,” she said. ”We continue to believe that she will come back alive.”
Martin said the Levys also would like to meet with Condit. Mrs. Levy declined to talk to the congressman when he called last weekend, but Martin said that was because he had advised the couple not to discuss the case without a lawyer present.
A toll-free number has been set up to take tips about Levy – 1-800-860-6552.
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