11:15 a.m.

Police have obtained warrants to search Krista Dittmeyer’s vehicle and a second one, according to  Lt. Chris Perley of the Conway Police Department. He declined to provide further details.

Perley said police are following up on leads and analyzing physical evidence that has been seized. Police have fielded many calls from the public offering information, and Perley urged individuals to contact police even if they believe the information may be trivial.

12:05 a.m.

Police are treating the disappearance of a Portland woman, whose car was found Saturday morning in New Hampshire with her 14-month-old daughter inside, as a criminal matter.

Lt. Chris Perley of the Conway Police Department said there is no evidence to suggest the child was abandoned by her mother, 20-year-old Krista Dittmeyer.

The toddler is doing fine and is being cared for by family members, Perley said. The little girl was left inside a late-model black Nissan Sentra.

“We do not believe she left (her car) of her own volition,” Perley said.

Conway police reported late Sunday that there had been no new developments in the case.

Meanwhile, Dittmeyer’s family members, who live in Bridgton, waited and prayed for her safe return.

Her sister, Kayla Dittmeyer, flew into Maine on Sunday from her home in Denver, Colo.

Reached at her mother’s home in Bridgton, Kayla Dittmeyer, who is 22, said her younger sister works as a waitress at Buffalo Wild Wings Grill and Bar in South Portland. The restaurant opened last month.

Krista Dittmeyer, who graduated from Lake Region High School in 2008, currently resides in Portland.

She is a single mother, according to her sister.

“She would never, ever do that (abandon her child). She would do anything for her,” Kayla Dittmeyer said.

“It was all so out of character for her. She would never put her daughter in harm’s way,” her sister said.

Kayla Dittmeyer said her family has no idea why her sister might have driven to New Hampshire, although she does have acquaintances who live in that area.

She said she believes that her sister convinced the person who forced her out of the vehicle to leave her daughter behind, effectively keeping her safe from harm.

“My sister is very headstrong, but she is also very bold and very honest. That is why I feel she is OK. She’s a very strong person,” Kayla Dittmeyer said. “I believe she is trying to talk her way through this.”

According to Conway police, officers responded to the report of an unattended car — its flashers on and the engine running — in the parking lot of the Cranmore Mountain ski area in North Conway around 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

Police took custody of the toddler, who was taken to a local hospital for evaluation. The child was in good condition and was turned over to family members.

Members of the North Conway Fire and Rescue Department, as well as the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office, searched the area with no success.

Police said the last contact Krista Dittmeyer had with her family was Friday night. She called her mother around 8 p.m.

Police said Krista Dittmeyer is 5-foot-2, weighs 117 pounds and has brown hair and brown eyes.

Anyone with information regarding her whereabouts is urged to contact Conway police at (603) 356-5715.

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

dhoey@pressherald.com

 

Staff Writer Edward D. Murphy contributed to this report.