• Mother vanishes from popular hiking trail; cellphone, purse found inside car

    By: Chris Jose

    Updated:

    COBB COUNTY, Ga. - There are new developments in the search for a mother of two who vanished from a popular hiking trail. Police are calling the disappearance "odd."

    Valerie Maynard’s vehicle was found unlocked in the Pigeon Hill parking area on Burnt Hickory Road. The popular trail entrance is one of the main access points to Kennesaw Mountain.

    The last time anyone saw Maynard was Sept. 3.

    Only Channel 2 Action News was there when Cobb County police and U.S. park rangers searched the abandoned white Range Rover last Wednesday. A cellphone and purse were still inside, according to police. A K-9 team searched the SUV for clues.

    A park ranger said a scent was never picked up. He said the car had been parked for a couple days, but nothing initially appeared to be unusual.

    "It doesn’t make you feel very safe, that’s for sure. Because it is isolated, you really don’t know who’s going to be in the area," hiker Angie Reeder said.


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    "This is not something she’s done normally in the past. It’s (gonna) be out of the ordinary for her, and suspicious for (family)," Wayne Delk with the Cobb County Police Department said.

    Court records reveal the mother of two was recently in a bitter divorce. Investigators said Maynard had been "couch surfing" before she disappeared.

    “Oh my gosh, you feel terrible for the family. Because you can so relate to it, especially with it being so close to home. It feels like it’s one of your own family members,” hiker Laura Rogers said.

    The court document shows the woman's attorney filed a motion for a new trial on Aug. 30.

    Channel 2's Chris Jose called her friends and family on Tuesday. One friend told Chanel 2 Action News she's concerned about Maynard's well-being.

    Police said they're looking at all possible scenarios. Investigators said they need the public's help to generate leads.

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