PANAMA CITY, Panama (AP) — Panamanian police named an American ex-Marine as a person of interest Sunday in the disappearance of a 42-year-old California woman last seen on an archipelago near the Costa Rica border.
Police in Panama and the United States haven't identified Brian Brimager as a suspect as they investigate the case of Yvonne Baldelli, who was reportedly dating Brimager. But Panama national police official Alexis Munoz said Sunday that Brimager had raised investigators' interest.
Later in the day, Baldelli's mother, Lillian Faust, who is in Panama for the investigation, said she thinks her daughter is dead and begged for Brimager to tell what he knows about what happened to her.
"My husband, I, the famiy know that something happened to her. Some people want to say that she's out there somewhere, but everyone in the family knows that's not possible," Faust said.
"We did not want to accept it for a long time, but we have accepted it," she added.
Panama police said Brimager left Panama for Costa Rica and the United States some 10 days after last being seen with Baldelli in November on the Bocas del Toro islands. Baldelli's family reported her missing in January.