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Family searches job site

Friends and family of missing UND student Dru Sjodin searched Tuesday the place where her alleged abductor worked. Denny Adams and his bloodhound, Calamity Jane, walked through the senior citizen residence recently completed on the east side of M...

Friends and family of missing UND student Dru Sjodin searched Tuesday the place where her alleged abductor worked.

Denny Adams and his bloodhound, Calamity Jane, walked through the senior citizen residence recently completed on the east side of McIntosh, Minn.

Alfonso Rodriguez Jr., worked at the site last fall on a drywall crew, including three days during the week after Sjodin disappeared from a Grand Forks mall Nov. 22.

Charged with kidnapping Sjodin, Rodriguez remains in the Grand Forks jail under $5 million bond, awaiting a March 5 preliminary hearing.

Adams, of Conde, S.D., said his dog would be able to pick up Sjodin's scent or the scent of a deceased human, even if it was behind a wall for months.

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Nothing was found Tuesday in the new apartment complex, which already has residents, Adams said.

Lowell Sjodin, Dru's uncle, and a handful of others were along on the search.

The group also stopped at a rest area on U.S. Highway 2 just west of McIntosh, where the attendant told them that Rodriguez often stopped on the way to or from work last fall.

Rodriguez, 50, was working at the construction site in McIntosh on Nov. 26 when investigators first questioned him about his whereabouts Nov. 22, the day Sjodin disappeared.

Listed as a Minnesota Level 3 sex offender, Rodriguez had been the subject of a public meeting in Crookston when he moved back to his hometown in May. He just had been released after 23 years in state prison for knifing and attempting to abduct a woman from a Crookston street.

Nov. 26, Rodriguez told them he had been in Grand Forks on Nov. 22, but was at a movie at the time Sjodin was abducted. However, investigators determined that the movie Rodriguez described had not been showing in Grand Forks at that time.

Co-workers of Rodriguez said he had uncharacteristically driven alone in his own car to work that week, Nov. 24-26, from Crookston, which is about 40 miles northwest of McIntosh.

Law enforcement officials have said the site was thoroughly searched in November. Rodriguez's car also was searched; a knife was found in the trunk.

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Investigators said in court documents related to Rodriguez's Dec. 1 arrest that blood matching Sjodin's DNA was found in Rodriguez's car.

The official law enforcement search for Sjodin, headed by sheriff's departments in Grand Forks and Polk counties, has been on hold since mid-December. Officials say that all areas have been covered and, until after the spring thaw, there is little to do.

But the family's search will continue this week and next, said Adams.

Today areas near Fertile, Minn., will be searched, weather permitting, he said.

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