Sacto 9-1-1
November 9, 2011
Candlelight vigil planned for missing Natomas teenager

Sergio Jimenez.jpgA candlelight vigil will be held Thursday evening for a 17-year-old Natomas youth who has been missing for a week.

Sacramento City Councilwoman Angelique Ashby and the family of Sergio Jimenez will sponsor the gathering from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Peregrine Park, 3031 Guadalajara Way in North Natomas.

Sacramento police this afternoon searched a drainage canal near Natomas Pacific Pathways Prep High School on Del Paso Road for any signs of the high school senior or his belongings. Police Department spokesman Sgt. Andrew Pettit said there is no evidence at this point that Jimenez (pictured) is the victim of foul play. But family members say the youth has no history of running away.

Tom Rutten, principal of Natomas Pacific Pathways, said video from a surveillance camera shows Jimenez on the campus about 3 p.m. Nov. 2. The youth's cousin spoke with him a few minutes later, then got on the bus assuming Jimenez also was on board. He has not been seen or heard from since.

Unlike many missing person cases, in which authorities can try to track the individual's cell phone or credit card use, those options haven't been available to police in this instance, Pettit said.

Jimenez lives in Sacramento with his aunt, and Pettit said police have talked with other family members throughout the state.

Approximately 600 people from the high school and community joined in a search of the area around the school Saturday, Rutten said. Five detectives also were on campus today to continue interviewing students and make sure they hadn't missed anything.

"The Sacramento Police Department is continuing to work this really, really hard," Rutten said.

He described Jimenez as a "good, solid A-B student, quiet, polite, a nice kid, happy."

Rutten said Jimenez has a core group of friends, who enjoy going to the movies and playing video games at one another's homes.

He said the charter school, with approximately 475 students, is a close-knit community. "We're trying to make it as normal as possible," Rutten said of the campus atmosphere, but Jimenez's disappearance has been felt.

Police urge anyone with information regarding Jimenez to call the Police Department's non-emergency number (916) 264-5471, or Crime Alert at (916) 443- 4357. Tips also may be sent via text to 274637. Enter SACTIP followed by the tip information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

If Jimenez left voluntarily, police hope he will contact authorities to let them know he is safe.

"If Sergio gets this message," Pettit said, "we'd like him to know that he's not going to get in trouble."

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