SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- A lawyer for the man publicly identified as a "person of interest" in the disappearance of a 19-year-old woman said his client is the target of police "speculation," and has no connection to the case.
Thousands of volunteers have helped search for Brooke Wilberger, a Brigham Young University student last seen May 24 at a Corvallis apartment complex, in a case that has sparked national interest. FBI agents are working the case in both Oregon and Utah.
So far, police have publicly identified only one man, Tigard resident Sung Koo Kim, as a "person of interest" in the case, although they have said they are speaking with four others.
Kim has been accused of stealing women's underwear from homes and college residence halls in two Oregon counties, including from one dormitory at Oregon State University in Corvallis, near where Wilberger was last seen.
Speaking about the Wilberger case, Kim's defense attorney, Michael Greenlick of Portland, told The Oregonian that his client, "will not become a suspect or be charged with that offense."
Kim is an unemployed microbiologist who lives with his mother in Tigard, Yamhill County prosecutor Brad Berry told the newspaper.
Kim was arrested a few days ago on burglary and theft charges; his family posted $100,000 to keep him out of the Yamhill County Jail.
Lt. Ron Noble, a spokesman for Corvallis police, said the charge that Kim burglarized an Oregon state dormitory and allegedly helped himself to women's underwear "would be an obvious thing to look into."
(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)