Wednesday, June 30, 1999


Direct-mail cards
feature photo of
missing Maui girl

Emily French, 4, and
her sister were allegedly
abducted by their mother

By Pat Omandam


The search for a missing 4-year-old Maui girl is being publicized nationally over the next month as part of a direct-mail campaign supported by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

At the center's request, direct mailer ADVO Inc. is featuring the picture of Haiku resident Emily French on up to 79 million direct-mail cards being sent throughout the mainland over the next four weeks.

The picture campaign began in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. The "Have You Seen Me?" cards include a description of Emily and her alleged abductor -- her mother, Mary Lou French -- along with the toll-free number for the center.

The girl and her sister have been missing since Jan. 6 of this year.

Vincent Giuliano, ADVO's senior vice president for government relations, said in a press release on the campaign that somebody knows where Emily is.

"We are urging the American public to look for her picture in their mailboxes and to call the National Center's hot line with any information on her whereabouts," he said.

Maui Police Department Detective Ron Tamanaha said in the release that Emily and her sister Sarah, 3, were allegedly taken by their mother in January, after they failed to meet their father, James French, at a scheduled visitation.

James French then went to the children's home in Haiku to discover it had been vacated and sold. Tamanaha said two felony warrants for custodial interference have been issued for Mary Lou French's arrest since their disappearance.

"So far, we've had several good leads, but they haven't panned out for us yet," he said.

"We're doing everything we can to find Emily and her sister. Hopefully, these cards will bring us the one lead we're looking for."

Police believe the three may have left Maui. Here are their descriptions:

Bullet Emily French was born Sept. 23, 1994. She is 3 feet, 3 inches tall and weighs 31 pounds. She has black hair and brown eyes. She has protruding front teeth, and her left front tooth is slightly gray.
Bullet Sarah French was born Nov. 25, 1995. She is 3 feet, 2 inches tall and weighs 35 pounds. She has black hair and brown eyes.
Bullet Mary Lou French was born April 28, 1945. She is 5 feet tall and weighs 160 pounds. She has dyed blond hair and brown eyes. French has scars on her fingers on the palm side of her left hand.

She may be using the alias last name Barr, Spradlin or Pettit.

Anyone who has information on this case should call the Maui Police Department juvenile division at (808) 244-6400 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at (800) 843-5678.

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