Before she vanished, Sydney Loofe sent her friend a Snapchat selfie with the words “Ready for my date” and a smile.
The Nov. 15 message was the last anyone heard of the Nebraska woman, whose parents reported her missing the next day. Friends grew worried when Loofe, 24, didn’t show up at her job at a Menard’s chainstore.
The Lincoln Police Department has identified two persons of interest in the case—including one woman who supposedly met Loofe on Tinder and took her on two dates the week she disappeared. (Tinder is owned by IAC, the parent corporation of The Daily Beast.)
Cops were seeking Bailey M. Boswell, 23, and a 51-year-old male named Aubrey C. Trail, but police chief Jeff Bliemeister declined to comment on how the unlikely duo might be connected to Loofe, the Lincoln Journal Star reported.
Trail and Boswell allegedly posted a video Wednesday—to the Facebook group ‘Finding Sydney Loofe,’ run by her family—denying they had anything to do with her disappearance. The footage has since been deleted.
The missing persons probe now includes investigators with the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service, as well as Nebraska State Patrol.
On Thursday morning, an FBI agent announced Trail and Boswell had been located “somewhere in the Midwest” but that it was a “very fluid situation.”
“Even though we’ve located and [are] interacting with the two individuals … we are still seeking any and all information from anybody regarding their knowledge of where Sydney could be and ask for their assistance,” said Randy Thysse, special agent for the FBI’s Omaha division.
Chief Bliemeister told reporters that investigators were eager to speak to Boswell and Trail because “as they stated in their Facebook posts,” they were with Loofe around “the last time we know where she was.”
The bizarre Facebook video came just before investigators searched ponds and creek beds in Saline and Gage counties for evidence.
“Hi, good morning. I’m Bailey, Audrey on Tinder and a few other names because I have warrants,” a woman who appears to be Boswell tells the camera.
“But this really isn’t about me. This is about Sydney, and I just kind of want to tell you what I already told the Lincoln police more than one time,” the woman continues.
“I met her on a Tuesday, we drove around Lincoln, smoked weed, had a great time, we hit it off. I dropped her off at home. Picked her up the next night at her house. We drove around smoked weed again,” the woman explains.
The woman claims she and Loofe smoked “wax” and “shatter,” and that she gave Loofe “a quarter ounce of some really good weed.”
“I went to take her home, and she asked me to drop her off at a friend’s house, so I did so,” the woman said. “I gave her my number. We were planning to go to the casino that weekend.
"I haven’t heard from her since."
The man who appears to be Trail introduces the video, saying, “We’ve spent the last few days watching ourselves being slammed and crucified” in the news media, “so we thought it was time we had our say.”
The man says that he and Boswell have tried phoning police multiple times, only to be told someone would call them back.
He also names his Falls City attorney, who did not return messages left by The Daily Beast.
The man said he and Boswell “wrote long statements” for Lincoln detectives through his lawyer, “telling them everything we know.”
“They’re telling you that they have all these leads …. What they’re not telling you is that we are the two people who gave them all these leads,” the man claims.
“You’ve already crucified us in the newspapers, you’ve already crucified us on Facebook. You know, in America, I sure thought it was a trial first but I guess not,” the alleged person of interest continues.
The man claims that he and Boswell run a $100,000-a-year antiques business through eBay and antiques malls in Lincoln and Omaha.
“You’ve heard all of this stuff about my criminal history: all true. Been convicted of bad checks and forgery and all that good stuff … but I guess I’m a person of interest now,” he says.
At the end of the 9-minute clip, the man and woman flip the bird at the camera.
“They’re chasing us around like dogs,” the man says, adding, “I wish the family the best …. I wish Sydney the best. But as far as the police department, fuck you.”
“Yeah,” the woman agrees, before the video ends.
Loofe’s cousin told 6 News that her kin didn’t recognize the persons of interest. “In Nebraska, you feel like you know everyone. I've never seen these people. I've never heard the names,” Folkers said Tuesday.
When reached by The Daily Beast, Folkers said the family has decided to hold off on interviews following the mysterious Facebook video.
But she did say Trail and Boswell weren’t known to Loofe’s friends and family. “I can confirm that we have never heard of these individuals until yesterday morning during the [Lincoln police’s] press release,” she said.
On Thursday, Loofe’s parents, George and Susie, briefly sat behind a podium during the FBI press conference. They wore pinback buttons with their daughter’s face, and George Loofe thanked the public for their support.
“In my opinion, someone knows something,” George Loofe said. “Please do the right thing. Thank you.”
Loofe’s parents previously said their daughter missed work after going on a date the night before with someone she met online.
According to police, Loofe’s last known location was in Wilber, about 40 miles southwest of Lincoln, Nebraska.
Her phone was disabled after pinging off a cell tower in the Wilber area, her family said in a missing persons’ flier.
Loofe’s parents—who live in Neligh, about 150 miles northwest of Lincoln and called police to conduct a welfare check on their daughter—told the Journal Star it was “extremely odd” that her cellphone was turned off.
And that her car and her cat, Nimzy, were left at her Lincoln home.
“She was planning on coming home that night,” Susie Loofe told the newspaper last week.
On Facebook, friends are circulating photos of Loofe and of her tattoos: a yin-yang on her forearm; the word “Believe” with a cross on the inside of her left wrist; and the words “Everything will be wonderful someday” on her bicep.
Supporters have taken to Facebook to badger Boswell on her own page, where she describes herself as a “stay-at-home parent.”
“They sure have time to record themselves but not stop by the police station. Why are you hiding if you have done nothing wrong???????” one woman wrote in a comment.
Another woman wrote, “Don’t you think running is going to make things worse? You have kids right? What if your kid came up missing... I get it, you are scared! And probably in ALOT of trouble... But put yourself in her family’s shoes. How would you feel if your daughter came up missing?”
Boswell’s Facebook profile is littered with photos of a man she called her fiancé in September of 2015 and of her baby daughter.
Meanwhile, Trail appears to have less of an online presence.
Saline County prosecutors obtained an arrest warrant for Trail last week, the Journal Star reported, accusing him of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Trail has previous convictions for forgery and issuing bad checks, the warrant stated. But the warrant was withdrawn one day after it was filed.
The 51-year-old previously lived in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Falls City, Nebraska, the Journal Star reported. Boswell lived in Trenton and Milan, Missouri.
Trail recently lived in a basement apartment in Wilber, Nebraska—where Loofe’s cellphone last pinged a tower.
Longtime friend and coworker Terra Gehrig, 23, told the Journal Star that Loofe texted her the day before she went missing.
Loofe told her she was going on a second date with a woman named “Audrey,” who she described as her “dream girl.”
Gehrig said Loofe is a sweet cashier with a “very good heart.”
“She’s the kind of person the world needs more of,” Gehrig said.