Reward now $100,000 for info about missing Keller college student

Zuzu Verk
Zuzu Verk Courtesy

The reward has increased to $100,000 for information leading to the whereabouts or safe return of a missing college student from Fort Worth who has been missing for nine days in West Texas.

Zuzu Verk, 21, a junior at Sul Ross State University, was last heard from early Oct. 12. She went on a date the night before but didn’t show up for class or work the next day.

We’ve collected over 100 interviews and statements from potential witnesses,” Alpine Police Chief Russell Scown said, WFAA reported.

Authorities talked about their efforts Friday in a news conference they carried live on Facebook.

“We’ve gathered mounds of evidence including computers, cellphones, vehicles,” Scown said.

The one thing they haven’t been able to do is talk to Zuzu’s boyfriend.

“Unfortunately we have one individual who we believe does have information, who has refused to come and talk to us,” Scown says.

She is considered possibly in danger, police say.

Alpine police posted a notice on their Facebook page of the increased reward, which has gone from $7,500 to $100,000 since Verk went missing. The post includes photos of Verk and a physical description: white female, 5 feet tall, 110 pounds, blond hair and hazel eyes.

The search for the former Timber Creek High School student has expanded from Alpine to include Marathon, Marfa and Fort Davis and the counties of Jeff Davis and Presidio. The Texas towns and counties are a few miles from Alpine, where Verk attends Sul Ross State.

Authorities are seeking information from anyone who saw a gray 2006 Jeep Liberty and a 2004 Mazda Miata convertible with a beige top being driven between midnight and 10 a.m. Oct. 12.

Alpine police say ground and air searches have continued around Alpine. Agencies involved in the search include the Brewster County, Reeves County and Pecos County sheriff’s departments.

Representatives from Texas EquuSearch are also assisting, as are troopers with the Texas Department of Public Safety and rangers with Texas Parks and Wildlife and the Texas Forest Service.

Federal agencies helping are Customs and Border Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the National Park Service.

Staff writer Patrick M. Walker contributed to this report, which includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.

Rafael Sears: 817-390-7657, @searsrafael