GREAT FALLS — We’re not giving up hope - that was the message from the Blackfeet Reservation Police Chief Jess Edwards Thursday at a virtual news conference on Thursday to update people on the search for Arden Pepion.
Arden, three years old, was last seen on April 22nd in the vicinity of Joe Show East Road off of US Highway 89, several miles southeast of Browning.
During the news conference, Blackfeet Law Enforcement Services announced for the first time that Pepion was last seen with her non-custodial uncle.
Edwards said “based on the totality of circumstances,” officials do not believe Arden was abducted.
A formal search lasted 10 days, but was only able to find footprints leading to the Two Medicine River and a boot believed to be hers in the river.
The search since has since been scaled back, but people continue to volunteer to search for her.
"We are going to do a little search today to continue to make those promises that we are going to continue searching with hope and prayers, because we all know, this reservation, how we come together is through prayer,” said Edwards.
Blackfeet Law Enforcement Services also said Thursday that an update on the search for Leo Wagner, reported missing shortly after Arden, may be provided in the near future.