Press conference 1pm - Police search for sex offender after - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Press conference 1pm - Police search for sex offender after 5-year-old abducted

Abigail Elaine Bertholf (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.) Abigail Elaine Bertholf (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.)
Abigail Elaine Bertholf (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.) Abigail Elaine Bertholf (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.)
Jeffrey Dean Shelton (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.) Jeffrey Dean Shelton (Source: Butler County Sheriff's Dept.)

POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - An Amber Alert has been issued after police say a registered sex offender abducted a 5-year-old girl in Poplar Bluff. Tune into a live press conference from Poplar Bluff at 1 p.m.

The missing child is Abigail Elaine Bertholf. She is described as a 5-year-old female with medium complexion, black hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a pink princess night gown, according to the Poplar Bluff Police Department.

The suspect is 46-year-old Jeffrey Dean Shelton. He is a registered sex offender. Shelton is described as a white male, 6' tall, 175 lbs. with green eyes and brown hair. He has a scar near his left eye.

The suspect left in a Silver 2001 Nissan Pathfinder with a Missouri license plate number of PJ8-Z5M.

Shelton is wanted for abduction and assault against another person, according to the Butler County Sheriff's Department.

The FBI from Cape Girardeau and St. Louis is assisting in the investigation. The Poplar Bluff/Butler County Major Case Squad has been activated.

The abduction happened at 6:50 a.m. at a home in the 2100 block of Wood St. Her mother told police Abigail was asleep on the couch.

Family members say police came and cut out part of a screen in a window and took part of the couch for evidence.

Neighbors say Shelton hung around the area a lot. One mother says she confronted Shelton about being too close to her children.

Police say they do not know the circumstances surrounding the abduction.

Police do not know where the suspect is headed, but he does have family in Oklahoma.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the FBI tip line at 1-888-265-8639 or local law enforcement. Call the Butler County Sheriff's Department at 573-785-8444 or the Poplar Bluff Police Department at 573-785-5776.

Police are planning a 1 p.m. press conference at the Black River Coliseum in Poplar Bluff.

Stay with Heartland News and kfvs12.com for updates.

Copyright 2012 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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