Paige Aiello, a senior at The College of New Jersey, has been missing for two days, but law enforcement authorities said today her purse has now been found on the George Washington Bridge and her car was located near a train station along the Northeast Corridor line.
A Port Authority of New York and New Jersey spokesman said the white purse was found about 8 p.m. Tuesday on the south walkway of the George Washington Bridge and contained Aiello's ID. The Somerset County prosecutor's office said in a statement that her 2006 Audi A4 was found at 10:15 p.m. Wednesday inside a parking garage next to the New Brunswick train station in central New Jersey.
NJ Transit police are also involved in the search because of the proximity of the train station, which is along the busy train line connecting Trenton with New York City.
Aiello, a senior communications manager and member of the tennis team, was reported missing by her parents, who said they last saw her 1 p.m. Tuesday. Though no word of foul play has been reported, Hillsborough Police directed calls this morning to the county prosecutor, who could not be reached.
Matt Golden, a TCNJ spokesman, said the school issued an alert to its community yesterday and that anyone with information should contact authorities. The school is also offering counseling for any of Aiello's associates.
Golden said he could not confirm reports that Aiello was in class Tuesday. He said she is listed as living with her parents off-campus in Hillsborough, Somerset County.
He said Aiello is set to graduate in May, "in very good academic standing."
The Port Authority says New York harbor police scanned the waters of the Hudson and did not find anything. There were no reports of actvity, such as attempted suicide, on the bridge, a spokesman said.
The College of New Jersey is in Ewing Township, Mercer County.
Authorities are asking anyone with information about Aiello’s whereabouts to contact the Hillsborough Township Police Department at 908-369-4323, the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office at 908-575-3300, Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS(8477) or online at www.888577tips.org or www.scpo.net and click on either “Crime Stoppers” or “TIPS HOTLINE”. All calls are confidential.