The disappearance of Mollie Tibbetts: A timeline

Published: Aug. 21, 2018 at 8:36 AM CDT
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The search for Mollie Tibbetts may have ended today with the recovery of a body believed to be that of the 20-year-old University of Iowa student last seen July 17.

Here is a timeline of the search:

July 16, 2018

Tibbetts, a rising sophomore at the University of Iowa, was staying with her boyfriend, Dalton Jack, for the summer in Brooklyn, Iowa, a close-knit farming community of about 1,500 people. She worked at


Jack, 20, told ABC News he last saw Tibbetts on July 16.

July 17, 2018

Jack traveled to the city of Dubuque, Iowa, for his work at a construction company on July 17.

Tibbetts stayed at his house in Brooklyn alone and watched his dogs, he said.

July 18, 2018

Her boyfriend, Dalton Jack, said he chatted with Tibbetts via text messages and social media on July 18, just before she went out for an evening jog which, Jack said, was her regular routine.

"She goes for a run every night. She likes to go whenever the sun's not down," Jack told ABC News in a recent interview. "She knows Brooklyn extremely well, better than I do, and I’ve lived here my entire life."

Jack said he believes Tibbetts would have had both her

when she went out for her jog.

Tibbetts was last seen at approximately 7:30 p.m. local time that night while running along the city streets of Brooklyn. She was wearing dark-colored running shorts, a pink sports top, and running shoes, according to the


Tibbetts’ brother said investigators found evidence that she was

Wednesday night on her laptop, but investigators haven’t confirmed that information.

July 19, 2018

Tibbetts was reported missing by her family on July 19, after she didn't


"That is so out of Mollie's character, one, not to show up for work, two, not to let her employer know, and, three, boyfriend, myself and her brother -- just no one was notified that she didn't go to work," Tibbetts' mother, Laura Calderwood said.

July 20, 2018

Crews focused search efforts Friday on the fields between Tibbetts’ house and where she was staying

. Crews also tried searching with helicopters, but low cloud cover prevented them from getting the aircraft up,


July 21, 2018

The Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office said that

for search efforts on Saturday and would use social media to ask for future volunteers if they are needed.

July 24, 2018

Investigators say they are looking into

of all Mollie's electronic devices.

July 26, 2018

Police in Kearney, Missouri, responded on July 26 to an unconfirmed sighting of Tibbetts at a truck stop in the area. The location was more than 230 miles away from where she was last seen.

Officers conducted a search of the area, spoke with witnesses and reviewed any potential surveillance video, according to ABC News affiliate KMBC.

Iowa authorities spent the day analyzing surveillance video from businesses in Brooklyn that are along the route Tibbetts usually jogs. They were also

, a GPS-enabled activity tracker, according to Poweshiek County Sheriff Thomas Kriegel. h

"We do believe that there's going to be some useful information [from the Fitbit data] but [we are] not willing to share that," Kriegel told ABC News


Fitbit Inc., which makes the activity trackers, declined to comment at the time.

Kriegel also said Tibbetts' boyfriend and brothers


July 27, 2018

Authorities, with the help of hundreds of volunteers, scoured swaths of land in Brooklyn and surrounding Poweshiek County looking for Tibbetts in the days following her disappearance. Investigators canvassed neighborhoods and conducted dozens of interviews.

They also

several times near Guernsey, about 10 miles south of Brooklyn. Richard Rahn, special agent in charge of the Iowa Department of Public Safety's Division of Criminal Investigation, told ABC News it's "not uncommon" to

and conduct additional searches as tips come in.

Rahn declined to reveal what clues if any, investigators may have found at the pig farm. But he said one thing is for certain -- Tibbetts isn't there.

Iowa DCI said they were confident that they had zeroed in on her


Mollie’s mom, Laura Calderwood,

for the first time. She said the day she went missing the two spoke about a recipe.

also hoped to spread awareness on the route.

July 29, 2018

Rob Tibbetts said the community near Brooklyn has made “extraordinary” efforts to spread the word about his daughter’s disappearance, but he believes there’s someone else with information that


“The day after Mollie turned up missing, 400 people showed up, spontaneously, to form a spontaneous search effort,” Rob Tibbetts said. “I think it’s just because this community knows Mollie, they love Mollie and I think the rest of the country is starting to understand who she is too.”

t-shirts, buttons, stickers, and yard signs in hopes of finding Mollie.

July 31, 2018

At a press conference, investigators had

more than 200 leads. Searches were conducted

, authorities said.

The Crime Stoppers of Central Iowa offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case or the discovery of Tibbetts. The TIP Rural Electric Cooperative in Brooklyn

, for a total of $2,000.

Aug. 1, 2018


is held for missing children and unsolved deaths of children.

The reward for Mollie’s

to $30,000.

Aug. 2, 2018

Tibbetts' family held a press conference on Aug. 2, where they said they believe


"We believe that Mollie is still alive and if someone has abducted her we plead with you" to let her go,


"Every day I feel Mollie's presence with me. Sometimes I just feel her sitting on my shoulder," she said.

Tibbetts' boyfriend also had a direct message for possible kidnappers.

"If they're listening I would just like them to know, imagine if this was you," Jack said at the press conference. "Imagine if his was you. Somebody had taken your Mollie. Wouldn't you want to help? Wouldn't you want her back? Just do the right thing and let her go."

That day, authorities told The Associated Press that a reported sighting of Tibbetts in


Investigators spent their day searching a

. The reward for her return increased to $172,000.

Aug. 3, 2018


outside the Poweshiek County Sheriff's Office. Not many specifics on the case or information was released. Kevin Winker, director of investigative operations for the Iowa Department of Public Safety, acknowledged how "frustrating" it is for the community and Tibbetts' loved ones.

Winker did say that Tibbett's disappearance is being treated as a missing person's case and the investigation "has not slowed." He told reporters that investigators are "confident" they have a "solid timeline," but declined to give further details.

He also declined to say whether they have identified any suspects.

Winker said on average 30-40 investigators are working on the case daily.

Federal investigators have interviewed residents in and around the town of Brooklyn. One of those was Wayne Cheney, a

investigators searched more than a week ago. He said he was interviewed by the FBI, but hasn’t been named a person of interest in the case.

The "Bring Mollie Tibbetts Home Safe Reward Fund" passes $200,000.

Aug. 5, 2018

The reward fund to bring Mollie home safely reaches $260,000. Crime Stoppers said they have received more than

regarding the case.

Aug. 6, 2018

Mollie’s dad Rob says

, hoping for a break in the investigation.

"It's important to know that since we've established the fund, CrimeStoppers said that as of this morning they have generated 479 new leads and tips," Rob Tibbetts said.

Aug. 7, 2018

Wayne Cheney, a farmer previously interviewed in the investigation, tells the Des Moines Register

. Cheney has a 70-acre farm with pigs in the Brooklyn area. At this time, he hasn’t been called a person of interest or suspect in the case.

Rob, Mollie’s dad, says he

that his daughter's disappearance will end on a happy note. He believes whoever has her is confused, as the investigation has escalated to a national level.

Mollie's boyfriend, Dalton Jack says he's trying to stay busy and leave the work to the authorities.

"It's all about her, my feelings don't matter it's all about her," said Jack.

The reward for Mollie's safe return has now

, and has generated


Aug. 8, 2018

Three weeks after her disappearance, new video surfaces showing

a day before she disappeared.

Police say a woman

that someone thought was Mollie at a gas station, was not her.

Aug. 9, 2018

A man who said he saw Mollie the night she disappeared defended himself after negative

. Riley says he told ABC “I dread that maybe I was the last person to see her" because he recalls seeing Tibbetts out jogging the same night she disappeared.

“Last I checked there were over 1,100 comments, and it was about 50 percent accusatory and demeaning about me,” Riley said.

The reward fund offered for her safe return grows to almost $316,000. A spokesman for Crime Stoppers of Central Iowa said Thursday the organization has passed on more than

investigating the disappearance of Mollie Tibbetts.

Aug. 10, 2018

Mollie’s dad, Rob, and her boyfriend, Dalton Jack, spend the day at the Iowa State Fair

in hopes of finding more information as to where Mollie could be.

Aug. 13, 2018

The Denny’s Restaurant in Brooklyn held a donation day. All the food came at no charge through 10 p.m., but the owners asked for a donation to help the Tibbetts family. The

search expenses or help the Tibbetts family.

Few details are released during a press conference. A new website is launched:

. So many people were logging into the website, the web team had to make a separate server for it. Over 1,500 tips were received online. Before Tuesday

in the case via phone and email.

Fleck Sales adds signs with Mollie’s

in hopes of helping to find Mollie.

Aug. 15, 2018

for Tibbetts in five key areas near her hometown. The locations of interest at the time were her boyfriend's home in Brooklyn; a carwash; a truck stop; a farm more than 3 miles from downtown Brooklyn; and another farm more than 6 miles away. Crime Stoppers of Central Iowa says a reward fund has grown to more than $366,000.

Vice President Mike Pence met with Mollie’s dad, Rob, her brothers, and her boyfriend Dalton Jack, aboard Air Force Two during his


"As a father, I can't imagine what the family of Mollie Tibbetts is going through," Pence said. "I just want Mollie's family to know, you’re In the hearts of every American..and we will continue to work and we will continue to pray for Mollie’s safe return.” Officials say they’ve received over 1,000 tips in the case.

Aug. 18, 2018

Mollie’s dad,

in California. Authorities say they’ve received over 2,300 tips in their search to find her. The reward to bring her home safely was over $366,000. Rob said law enforcement has been encouraging the Tibbetts to all return to their day-to-day lives and leave them in charge of the case. Rob said he will be coming back the moment there's a development on the investigation and wants to be an active participant in any search.

Aug. 21, 2018

Iowa DCI says a body has been found in Poweshiek County. Greg Willey, the vice president of Crime Stoppers of Central Iowa, says the body found Tuesday is