Uncle of missing girl booked into jail on warrant; 'main suspect' in girl's disappearance

Logan City Police announced the arrest of Alex Whipple, 21, for absconding from probation on Sunday. (Photo: Cache County Jail)

Logan City Police announced the arrest of Alexander William Whipple, 21, for absconding from probation on Sunday.

Whipple is the "main suspect" in the case of missing 5-year-old Elizabeth "Lizzie" Shelley. He was booked into the Cache County Jail just after midnight Sunday morning on a failure-to-appear (FTA) warrant with a $25,000 bond.

Whipple is the missing girl’s uncle. Police say they think he knows more about what happened to Shelley but he's being uncooperative with police.

Shelley is 3-feet, 6-inches tall with shoulder-length brown hair and brown eyes. She is believed to have been wearing blue jeans or a teal-colored plaid skirt.

Whipple was at the home of Elizabeth Shelley’s mother and her boyfriend Friday night. The girl’s disappearance coincides with when he left the home, sometime between 2 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Saturday.

He is a convicted felon who was sentenced to prison after engaging in a police pursuit in a stolen truck while intoxicated, Sept. 17, 2017.

His prison sentence was suspended and he was placed on probation for 5 years. The FTA warrant was issued on April 29, 2019, for his failure to comply with probation.

The FBI and the attorney general’s office joined search efforts Saturday evening with crews who’d worked 15-hour shifts searching in the area where Shelley lives.

Searchers did find clues of “evidentiary value” near the girl’s home that police say indicate she’s likely nearby. Search efforts are regrouping and recommencing Sunday morning with assistance from trained dogs.

Officials are asking the public to stay out of the area, which is between 300 South and 100 North and 300 West and 600 West in Logan. Logan City Police expanded the search area Sunday evening, including the areas of southwest Logan, Nibley, Hyrum and Mount Sterling.

However, if you see anything, contact Logan Police at 435-753-7555.

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