Tia Bakke(DENVER) — Police consider it “highly unusual” that they still have found no solid trace of Paul Kitterman, the 53-year-old father who went missing during halftime at Thursday’s Denver Broncos-San Diego Chargers game.
“People go missing quite often, but it’s highly unusual that someone goes missing for this amount of time,” Denver Police spokesman Sonny Jackson told ABC News.
“Obviously, it’s a missing persons case,” Jackson added. “Unfortunately, we get numerous cases every day on the same lines and people turn up relatively quick. In this case, he hasn’t shown back up and we’re concerned, as well as the family is.”
Authorities are combing through hours of surveillance footage from Thursday’s game in hopes of turning up clues.
“We’re reviewing tapes over at the stadium,” Jackson said. “We’re following up on any tips and leads we get as to where he might be. We’re basically in contact with the family quite a bit, seeing if we can get additional information from them. And we’re moving forward with the investigation.”
Kitterman seemed to be happy and behaving normally, his companions said, and told them that the experience of going to his first Broncos home game was “awesome.”
Soon afterwards, he vanished.
Court records showed Kitterman had a history of relatively minor motor vehicle citations over more than a decade. More recent legal troubles involved a major bank and the Colorado Department of Revenue.
His friend, Tia Bakke, who went with him to the Broncos game, said she knew he had money problems but doubted that would have been reason for him to vanish at the game.
“If he wanted to leave town because of money problems, he would have come home, gotten all of his money and left,” she told ABC News.
Denver Police were seeking information from anyone who might have seen Kitterman after his loved ones did.
“We got a report that he was possibly seen near a concession stand … at the end of the 3rd quarter, within the stadium at that time,” Jackson said. “So we’re following up on that, as well, talking to the person who said they think they saw him at that location and anybody else who gives us information that they saw him — so we can talk, see what his demeanor was, what he might have said, things of that nature.”
Foul play is not considered likely because “with 70,000 people and cameras all over the stadium, you would see something if a violent crime occurred,” Jackson said Monday.
Police were letting officials at Sports Authority Field dig through the game’s surveillance footage, a process that began Monday, because of their expertise with the camera setups, Jackson said on Tuesday. Any intriguing moments on the tapes were to be flagged for police.
“It takes a long time — specifically when you’re looking for one individual with a lot of people in the crowd,” Jackson said. “You’re talking about a stadium. So you have to start at the time he went missing and move forward. … There are numerous gates, there are numerous areas around the stadium, so that’s going to take some time.”
The Denver Police Department tweeted Tuesday that they had located a male body near the stadium, but said they did not believe it was Kitterman.
Kitterman was sitting with his stepson, Jarod Tonneson, after going to the game with Bakke and another friend, who were sitting in a different section. He was last seen by his son when he left to go meet those friends around halftime.
Kitterman, a construction worker and ranch hand from Kremmling, Colorado, did not have his cellphone or any credit cards — and only had about $50 cash — when he went to the game, Bakke told ABC News.
“He would never bail on his son or anyone, so by Friday night we knew something was really, really, wrong,” Bakke told ABC News.
Police were not actively searching on foot for Kitterman because there was no indication a crime occurred, they said.
Besides the analysis of the surveillance footage, much of the search appeared to be in the hands of friends passing out fliers.
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