Authorities Search Area Sinkhole for Missing Opp Teen

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A dive team is searching a Walton County sink hole near Ponce de Leon, Fla., for an Opp teenager who disappeared nine years ago from her father's home.

Authorities are following up on a tip from an anonymous caller claiming to know the location of Kemberly Ramer's body, said Alan Ducote, an FBI agent with the agency's Mobile office. As of Tuesday afternoon, the search had not recovered any remains from the sinkhole, which is about 300 feet wide and 55 feet deep.

The caller contacted the Opp Police Department in April and gave directions to the sinkhole on private property in a rural area five miles from the city limits. The caller then hung up.

Cadaver dogs investigated the area Tuesday morning before a team of 10 divers began searching the site at 11 a.m., Ducote said.

"We'll probably be searching for two to three days," Ducote said.

The search didn't begin until July because that was the earliest authorities could bring a dive team to the area, Ducote said.

Ramer disappeared from her father's home on Aug. 15, 1997. Earlier in the day, the 17-year-old had played softball and spent time with friends before returning home.

Since her disappearance, searches have been conducted throughout south Alabama and the Florida Panhandle. No one has been charged in her disappearance.

Ramer's mother and sister were at the site Tuesday, Ducote said.

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