Sheriff asks public for help in investigation into teens' deaths
Anyone in the area of Caldwell Fields or the nearby shooting range Wednesday or Thursday is asked to call.
By Shawna Morrison
The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office made a plea Monday, the fifth day of its continuous investigation into the killings of two Virginia Tech students, that anyone who was in the Craig Creek Road area in the 24 hours before the teens' bodies were found contact deputies.
That includes not only people who were in the Caldwell Fields area of the Jefferson National Forest, where the bodies of David Metzler and Heidi Childs were found, but also anyone who was in the area of the national forest shooting range between 8 a.m. Wednesday and 8 a.m. Thursday, when the bodies were found by a passer-by.
"It is possible that they may unknowingly have information that could assist in the double homicide investigation being worked by our office," Lt. Brian Wright said.
Wright said Metzler and Childs were last heard from about 8:30 or 9 p.m. Wednesday. He said he couldn't elaborate on that contact.
At her funeral Monday, which was streamed live on Heritage Baptist Church's Web site, Childs' father, Donald Childs, said that she and Metzler had planned to make a campfire that night and talk. He said Heidi Childs had told her parents that day she wanted to change her studies to pre-med and also wanted to talk to Metzler about it.
The sheriff's office has said it appears they were shot, though they have not said how many times or where on their bodies. Autopsies were performed at the medical examiner's office in Roanoke, but the report has not yet been released to the sheriff's office, Wright said.
Wright said Monday there was no new information to be released. He said deputies have heard from several people in connection with the incident, but no suspects or a suspect vehicle have been identified.
"There are so many avenues of leads to follow," he said.
Wright said investigators have been working closely with the Metzler and Childs families and have not been able to find a motive for the killings. That, he said, is why the sheriff's office believes the killings were random.
The sheriff's office had obtained a search warrant Thursday to check Metzler's 1992 Toyota Camry for any clues in the killings. Monday, a list of items taken from the car was filed in Montgomery County Circuit Court.
Only three items were listed: hairs, a sweatshirt and the car itself.
Metzler's body was found inside the car in a day-use area of Caldwell Fields, a popular hiking and camping site. Childs' was found outside it.
Anyone who was in the area is asked to call the sheriff's office at 382-2951