Extensive search for missing UF student continues
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Hundreds of volunteers continue to comb through the woods in search of a University of Florida student who went missing a week ago.
Miami-Dade urban search and rescue has joined the search for missing student Christian Aguilar. The search team, which assisted in recovery efforts during the Sept. 11 attack and the Oklahoma City bombing is joining the dozens already actively looking.
Family and friends are holding out hope that Aguilar could still be alive. A group of 20 students from Aguilar's former high school, Doral Academy Charter, left for Gainesville Wednesday night to also join in the search for the missing college student.
Dozens of students from his alma mater in Doral are now in Gainesville to search the woods alongside 200 heavily equipped police officers and their arsenal of horses and K-9s. "We're going to have a lot of paws and feet on the ground," said a police officer.
The Doral Academy alum and current University of Florida freshman went missing on Thursday.
Pedro Bravo has been charged with a third-degree felony for depriving a victim of medical treatment. Detectives said he confessed to beating Aguilar and leaving him in the woods, but police said, he keeps changing his story. "Pedro is a pathological liar," said the missing teen's father, Carlos Aguilar. "He's been telling lies from the beginning."
The suspect also reportedly bought a shovel and duct tape just days before Aguilar's disappearance. The development devastated the Aguilar family on Wednesday. "All the crying you saw in there because I told them we have to start thinking the worst," said Carlos Aguilar, the missing student's father, about the news of the Bravo's purchases.
But a beefed up search has restored their hope. "We're not going to give up," said Aguilar. "If the police support me, I'm going to become a part of Gainesville until they find my son."
Police plan to comb over areas searched before.
Right now though Bravo only faces a charge of preventing a crime victim from getting medical help, police say, more charges could come his way.
Though he is being held by police, Bravo has not been talking, using his right to remain silent.
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