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Goochland and Arizona police join forces in search of missing man

Posted at 11:06 PM, Jan 02, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-03 00:27:05-05

GOOCHLAND, Va. (WTVR)--Police in Arizona confirmed Wednesday night that they are working with Goochland County investigators, trying to close the gap between Manakin-Sabot and Flagstaff in the search for missing 34-year-old Andy Holzgrefe.

Flagstaff police say Holzgrefe, who vanished without a trace on or about December 12, was in Phoenix buying firearms at a gun show.  Some of those guns and ammunition, according to police, were shipped to his mother’s house in Goochland.

Yet there has still been no activity on his cell phone or with his bank account.

“You have to be realistic, especially when deploying resources,” said his uncle J.D. Holzgrefe.  “Our expectations are there, but of course, with time they get lower."

After the gun show, police say Holzgrefe took a leisure trip to Flagstaff. And according to his uncle, there's surveillance footage of him leaving a restaurant where he appeared to be in good spirits.  “He was spotted leaving the Cracker Barrel alone," said his uncle.

That was on Tuesday December 11.  His flight home was scheduled for December 12.  Detectives said after a phone conversation with his mother, he seemed as if he was getting ready to return home.

But Holzgrefe and the SUV he had rented from Budget disappeared.

“The vehicle he rented was dark blue and there was about 12 to 24 inches of snow,”  said J.D. Holzgrefe.  “So it's better than looking for a white car."

Investigators said weather has stifled the search a bit but they say their resources are still working every lead.  Holzgrefe's uncle said someone who stands six feet tall and weighs 300 pounds doesn't just disappear.  He's now hoping the promise of reward money will jog someone’s memory.

“The trail is cold,” said his uncle.   “We have the reward set at $2,000 dollars, but it will grow."

Police in Flagstaff told me they've put in a call to Goochland, asking deputies to search Holzgrefe's computer. 

J.D. Holzgrefe thinks there could be useful information in emails or on his hard drive that could bring some heat to a case where the trail has gone cold.