Elaine Park's Family & Boyfriend Are Mystified At Her Uncharacteristic Disappearance
Police scoured the area for clues and conducted a search using bloodhounds and cadaver dogs — but they found no trace of Elaine Park.
CALABASAS, CA — On January 28, 2017, 20-year-old Elaine Park drove to Calabasas, California, for a date — and no trace of her has been seen since.
In 2016, Park, an aspiring actress with a love of poetry and art, was living with her mother in the small community of La Crescenta, just north of Los Angeles, while attending college.
She began dating the son of a successful Hollywood businessman, who lived with his parents in a gated community in Calabasas. Family friend Rosemarie Wheeler described the relationship as "kind of on and off ... maybe more of a friendship."
On January 27, 2017, Park drove to her boyfriend's house in Calabasas. They had plans to attend a movie at 10:45 that night. She then spent the night with her boyfriend — but her friends and family became alarmed when she did not come home the next day, and failed to respond to text messages and phone calls.
Park's social media had also gone dark, which friends said was out of character for her. "For her to go silent across the board like that — it just seemed impossible," Wheeler said.
On January 31, four days after last seeing her daughter, Park's mother, Susan, reported her daughter missing.
During the investigation, it was discovered that security cameras around the house showed Park arriving, and then she and her boyfriend leaving the house to go to the movies at around 10:30. At approximately 1:30 A.M., security footage shows them being dropped off back home.
Private investigator Jayden Brant, who has worked on the case, said that he interviewed the Uber drivers, who said that the couple seemed to be happy, normal, and having a good time.
Wheeler claims that Park's boyfriend told her that in the morning, Park "woke up in some sort of panic attack, singing and dancing," and wanted to go home.
Brant stated that her boyfriend had given him a similar story. "He said she just kind of got up and seemed stressed and left," Brant said.
Security camera footage also showed Park walking out of the house, toward her car, that morning at around 6 A.M. The vehicle can be seen leaving the front gate — after that, Park was never seen again.
Police have interviewed Park's boyfriend and ruled him out as a suspect after stating that he has been "very cooperative."
A few days after she disappeared, Park's phone was pinged in Malibu. Police found her vehicle parked adjacent to the beach off of Pacific Coast Highway. Her family and friends wondered: How did her car end up in Malibu?
The car battery was dead and its lights were on. Inside the car, investigators found Park's belongings: A computer, her backpack, and money was exposed and visible. "It almost looks as if it was placed," Wheeler said. "There was no sign of a forced entry. There was no sign of a struggle; there was no blood."
Police scoured the area for clues and conducted a search using bloodhounds and cadaver dogs — but they found no trace of Park.
A few days later, police suspended the search and, eventually, the trail went cold. Park's mother told police that Park had suffered from depression in the past, but had never given any indication that she might be suicidal.
Brant said that he has investigated many different scenarios in an attempt to find out what could have happened to Park. He said that they considered the possibility that she could have gone for a hike, but believes that if that had been the case, she would have taken her phone with her.
Her family set up reward funds, created a Facebook page, and an anonymous tip line. But leads remain elusive. Police suspect foul play, but have no suspects and have made no arrests. "This case is still active. We still work this case. We are still looking for leads," Brant said.
Park is described as being between five foot five and five foot six inches tall and petite. She has several distinctive tattoos: a dagger on her right arm and, on her left arm, a cow skull and a moth. On her left shoulder, she has a red rose.
Police have asked anyone with information regarding Elaine Park's disappearance to call the Glendale Police at (818) 548-4911 or the Elaine Park Tip Line at (800) 551-3080.
Watch the "Have You Seen Elaine Park?" episode of Investigation Discovery's The Missing on ID GO now!