The recent investigation into the disappearance of IU student Lauren Spierer appeared to quiet down over the weekend, although the case continues to garner national attention.
The FBI, along with Bloomington police, searched two properties last week - one in Martinsville and one in Trafalgar - in connection with the Indiana University student's 2011 disappearance. Our chopper flew over both properties Saturday, but didn't find any activity there.
Investigators say their work centers on one man: 35-year-old Justin Wagers. Right now, he's in the Johnson County jail charged with flashing himself to numerous women.
Justin Wagers' grandfather on Lauren Spierer disappearance: "I don't think that's in him."
The FBI and other police agencies converged Thursday morning on the home in the 2900 block of Old Morgantown Rd. connected to Wagers. Bloomington Police confirm they were involved in the search Thursday in Martinsville. The FBI referred to Bloomington P.D. as the "lead agency" in the investigation.
Investigators sifted dirt removed from a barn near the property after cadaver dogs finished their work. County police agencies and the FBI were tight-lipped about the search, but investigators towed a white truck from the property.
Spierer was last seen out with friends near the Bloomington campus on June 3, 2011. In surveillance video released shortly after Spierer's disappearance, investigators keyed on a white truck recorded by security cameras, but later identified the company name on the side of the truck, spoke with the owner and determined there was no connection to the investigation.
Since Spierer's disappearance, her mother, Charlene, has made numerous pleas for information that would help police in their search for her daughter.
"There have been so many waiting to hear, waiting to hear, waiting to hear, that never said it was related to Lauren and this is just making me sick now. I want to find Lauren more than anything in the whole wide world and that’s the most important thing. So, if it is, it is, you know, I want to know," she told Eyewitness News Thursday.
We caught up with Wagers' neighbors in Franklin where he lived with his ex-wife. They say they didn't know about his criminal history, which stretches back 15 years.
"I never saw anything like that around here. None of the kids have said anything at least. I've got young girls. A lot of kids are in this neighborhood."
Despite the police searches, Wagers has not been charged in the disappearance of Lauren Spierer.
Wagers was arrested for exposing his genitals to a woman at a Circle K gas station near Bluff Road and County line Road in Johnson County. Wagers was charged with indecent exposure after the woman identified Wagers from his photo on the state sex offender registry.
"I put my car in reverse and my headlights are shining on him and I noticed his pants were down to his knees. And he turns toward me and just exposes himself," said one of his alleged victims.
There were at least five victims by last August. The description of the suspect was pretty much the same.
Last summer, Johnson County Sheriff Doug Cox was concerned.
"What we are worried about is what an individual like that will do next. Is it luring a child into his vehicle? Is it luring a female into his vehicle?" he said.
The vehicle seized on Wagers' property by police Thursday was a white pick-up with a dark cap, similar to one flashing victims saw last summer.
Police also learned Wagers was a possible suspect in another flashing incident in Morgan County. He has been locked up in the Johnson County Jail since August as similar instances were investigated.
Wagers has criminal convictions in five counties - Bartholomew, Brown, Johnson, Monroe and Morgan - dating back to 2000. He pleaded guilty in all of those convictions, which included pleas to 10 public indecency charges, four battery charges, two vicarious sexual gratification charges, and one charge each of intimidation and invasion of privacy.
He currently faces charges in Bartholomew County for public indecency and public nudity; Johnson County for public indecency and an unrelated charge of leaving the scene of an accident; and Marion County for performing sexual misconduct in the presence of a minor and public indecency.
He has been ordered to undergo sexual offender evaluation and treatment.
Thursday evening, Wagers' attorney, Chris Eskew, released the following statement about Thursday's investigation:
"Mr. Wagers has no knowledge regarding the disappearance of Lauren Spierer or any other missing person. The family has no further comment at this time and asks that the media respect their privacy."
Sheriff Cox says his department has no involvement in Thursday's search and "nothing they are doing is based on information they have obtained from my agency."
Homeowners Danny and Lisa Walker were on the scene. Danny Walker's father, who was visibly shaken, spoke with us as he left the scene.
"Nobody knows what they're looking for," said Charles Fields. "It would be upsetting for anybody."