FREEPORT, Ill. (WTVO) — This weekend marked more than a month since loved ones of Melissa Trumpy last saw or heard from her.
Carroll County, Stephenson County, the FBI and Illinois State Police are all working to locate Trumpy, and the most recent search happened this weekend in Freeport.
Family said the added resources is giving them hope.
“If anybody can do it, they can, right?” said Trumpy’s sister Mandy Mboge. “So, I feel like it’s a positive thing and something we’ve been pushing for.”
Family said the 37-year-old was on her way to her boyfriend’s house in Shannon, Illinois on October 26, and they have not seen or heard from the mother of three since. Her car was found abandoned the next day near Pearl City.
The FBI, Illinois State Police and Stephenson County are now helping Carroll County with the search, and Mboge said the added assistance gives her hope.
“You really do need the equipment to do it and if you don’t, we could be doing this forever,” Mboge said. “I’m hopeful now that we have extra help now and more resourceful people.”
With the holidays approaching, Trumpy’s family is feeling anxious. Ben Affrunti, the father of Trumpy’s kids, said that they just want to bring her home before Christmas.
“Everyday that she’s gone, there’s no closure for my kids.,” Affrunti said. “At this point in time, it’s hard to expect a real positive outcome, but the most positive outcome we could have here is to find Melissa and bring her home.”
Affrunti and Mboge said that they feel Trumpy’s boyfriend, Derek Hammer, is the key to finding her, and that they think he hurt Trumpy.
“I’d love to know where my sisters been for this past month, it would be great to know some details,” Mboge said. “I would love for them to talk, maybe just once out of this past month, and say something that could maybe be helpful.”
Hammer was arrested in Carroll County on unrelated charges the day after Trumpy was reported missing. Mboge and Affrunti were shown his mugshot from that arrest, which showed injuries to his face.
It is unknown how he was injured, but Trumpy’s family had an idea.
“Well I’m glad to know my sister didn’t go down without a fight,” Mboge said.
“Yeah, that definitely looks like he’s been in a fight,” added Affrunti. “It’s hard to even look at him.”
Police have not identified Derek Hammer as a person of interest in the case. He is now in custody in Stephenson County, related to his 2019 drug arrest. Public records were not available over the holiday weekend to show why he was rebooked, but they will be looked for Monday when the courts open.
The Green County, Wisconsin District Attorney said Sunday night that he has issued more than half a dozen warrants and subpoenas in an attempt to find out where Trumpy is.