The Disappearance of Alyssa Turnbull

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EARLY LIFE:

26-year-old Alyssa Turnbull is from South Gillies, a township within the census area of Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada. Described as vibrant, passionate and outspoken, she’s said to be very close to her family, especially her little sister. Before her disappearance, the pair were in constant communication, often speaking to each other via text message.

Unfortunately, Alyssa has also led a somewhat troubled life. She is known to struggle with addiction, drinking and using hard drugs in the years leading up to her disappearance. While her family has tried to help her get away from that lifestyle, they have been unsuccessful.

In January 2020, Alyssa moved with a boyfriend to the small township of Nipigon, Ontario. The move further worried her loved ones, as her boyfriend is known to participate in the drug trade.

DISAPPEARANCE:

The exact date Alyssa went missing is unknown. However, investigators have narrowed down the time frame to between March 23 and 25, 2020.

It was not until April 14, 2020 that Alyssa was reported missing to the Ontario Provincial Police. The report came after a family member received a text message from an acquaintance, saying they hadn’t seen the 26-year-old in weeks. This worried her family, as it was unlike her to be out of touch for so long.

SEARCH:

The search for Alyssa involves a large portion of the OPP, including members of the Emergency Response Unit, the Urban Search and Rescue Unit, the Northwest Region Crime Unit, the Forensic Identification Unit, the Underwater Search and Recovery Unit and officers with the Nipigon detachment of the police service.

Overall, there have been numerous searches conducted in relation to the investigation. Dozens of interviews have been done with persons of interests and those known to Alyssa, and several pieces of potential evidence have been collected. According to Alyssa’s aunt, officers recovered three garbage bags filled with the missing woman’s clothing and belongings at the beginning of their investigation.

In November 2020, the Northwest Region Emergency Response team, the Criminal Investigation branch and the Tactical Emergency Medical Service team were joined by the UCRT (Urban Search and Rescue, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Response specialized unit) for an extensive search of Nipigon’s sewage treatment facility. Pumper trucks, as well as officers in full-body hazmat suits, were also present. The search, which included settling ponds that are three meters deep, is said to not have been prompted by a tip and was the result of the OPP’s ongoing investigation into Alyssa’s disappearance.

That same month, OPP divers also searched an unspecified area for clues. The location has not been publicly released in an attempt to maintain the integrity of the investigation.

There have been rumours circulating around Nipigon and the surrounding area regarding Aylssa’s body or body parts being located. However, the OPP has been quick to discredit the validity of what is being said.

There is currently a $50,000 reward being offered by the OPP for any information leading the arrest and conviction of those involved in Alyssa’s disappearance or her location. As a result, numerous tips have been called in, and while investigators will not share what’s been said, they have revealed that detectives are being assigned to each lead in order to follow up on their validity. Given the belief that there are people out there who know what happened, they’re hoping the cash reward will be incentive enough for someone to come forward.

While the case is currently still classified as a missing persons investigation, foul play has not been ruled out. Alyssa’s family is preparing themselves for the worst, given the amount of time that’s gone by since she was last seen.

CASE CONTACT INFORMATION:

Alyssa Turnbull went missing from Nipigon, Ontario between March 23 and 25, 2020. She was 26 years old, and what she was last seen wearing is currently unknown. At the time of her disappearance, she stood at 5’3″ and weighed approximately 100 pounds. She has shoulder-length blonde hair that could have been dyed red or purple, and she has blue eyes.

Currently, the case is classified as a missing persons investigation.

Those with information regarding the case are asked to contact the Ontario Provincial Police at either 1-888-310-1122 or 1-807-887-2637. Tips can also be submitted anonymously via Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Image Credit: Ontario Provincial Police

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