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Smart, Captors Possibly Questioned in Vegas Last Week

Smart, Captors Possibly Questioned in Vegas Last Week

Posted - Mar. 15, 2003 at 1:48 p.m.



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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (AP) -- Three people questioned by police outside a Burger King in North Las Vegas last week were likely Elizabeth Smart and her two alleged captors, authorities said Saturday.

North Las Vegas police said the trio gave their names as Peter Marshall, Julitte Marshall and Augustine Marshall. They were questioned Tuesday but not arrested.

Elizabeth and drifters Brian David Mitchell and Wanda Barzee were picked up the following day near Salt Lake City by officers who recognized Elizabeth, even though she repeatedly denied her identity.

Mitchell used the alias Peter Marshall when he was arrested; Barza used the name Juliet Marshall, police said.

"Do we believe it was them? There's a strong possibility that, yes, it was those three," said North Las Vegas police spokesman Mark Martin, referring to the Tuesday encounter.

He said two officers responded to a call from restaurant workers that three people were "hanging out in front of the business." Martin said the three looked like transients, did not provide identification and did not want to answer the questions.

No police report was filed but authorities reviewed a dispatch record of the call and interviewed the officers after inquiries Friday from The Associated Press.

The Burger King is on a main North Las Vegas thoroughfare, a block east of Interstate 15. That highway is the most direct route from San Diego to Utah. Authorities believe the trio were recently in San Diego.

Mitchell had been arrested twice during the time police say Elizabeth was with the couple -- once in Salt Lake City on suspicion of shoplifting Sept. 27 and another time for trying to break into a San Diego County church, apparently in search of a place to sleep. He pleaded innocent in the shoplifting case Friday.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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