Judge issues gag order in case of missing Park County girl, arson

PARK COUNTY, Colo. – A judge on Monday issued a gag order in the mysterious case of a missing girl and a burned-out house, which will prevent authorities from releasing any further information about the case until the order is lifted.

Maggie Long, 17, went missing on Friday around the same time her home was damaged in a fire that authorities are saying is being investigated as arson.

Long was supposed to go to a concert Friday night at Platte Valley High School, Park County Undersheriff Dave Wohlers told Denver7, but never showed up. Her sister started posting on Facebook that Maggie was missing.

On Saturday, the sheriff’s office said it was “working a crime scene” off of County Road 43, but said no search parties were being organized to look for Long.

On Sunday morning, the sheriff’s office posted a message to Facebook: “Due to the serious nature of this investigation we ask that you keep the Long Family in your prayers. We are not able to release any further information at this time.”

And on Sunday night, the sheriff’s office said it was “working on an active arson investigation” and said: “We do not believe there is any risk to the public. We continue to ask for prayers for the Long family.”

“We’re not ruling anything in or anything out. We’re in full investigative mode,” Wohlers told Denver7 Sunday. “We’re as perplexed as anyone. Anything’s possible. We’re trying to put together the pieces of the puzzle, and the only thing I can say, is it’s a work in progress.”

And on Monday morning, the sheriff’s office said the gag order had been issued and that no other information would be available about the case.

Platte Canyon High School sent out a statement over the weekend regarding Long’s disappearance:

“Dear Platte Canyon Families: As you are most likely aware, our community is dealing with a situation of a missing student. Of course, we are all hoping for the best. As of this time, we have no further information to share. Please be assured that starting tomorrow morning, we will have support resources available for students and staff. There are also community resources available to families, staff, and students by calling the crisis hotline at 1-844-493-8255 or by using Text “TALK” to 38255 or by visiting the following website at http://coloradocrisisservices.org[coloradocrisisservices.org] I know this is a difficult time for everyone, but together we will get through this. With Sincerity, Dr. Brenda Krage, Superintendent”

Should the Park County Sheriff’s Office unveil more information about the case Monday, this story will be updated.

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