A 65-year-old woman who vanished April 29 may have been siphoning money from the Mississippi company where she worked as an accountant for years, according to her longtime boss.
Linda Reed told co-workers at a metal plant in Gallman that she was going shopping at Walmart and has not been seen since, the Jackson Clarion-Ledger reported.
She called her husband later that night and has not been heard from again, a Copiah County sheriff's investigator told The Huffington Post.
Reed lives in a trailer behind the metal plant where she works and when her coworkers arrived in the morning they could tell she hadn't returned, because a gate was locked from the outside.
Reed's family reported her missing on April 30 and her 2006 Chevy Envoy was found later that day in a secluded, wooded area.
Officers from the sheriff's department found her purse, wallet and cellphone inside the vehicle, Investigator Jeremy Thornton told HuffPost. There were no signs of damage to her Envoy, he added.
Since she vanished, the owner of Moore's Fabrication said he found discrepancies in her bookkeeping and now fears for his family's financial well-being, the Jackson Clarion-Ledger reported.
Moore didn't return calls from HuffPost and the Clarion-Ledger's report isn't specific about the extent of the potential mismanagement. Owner Shannon Moore said he's brought in an outside accountant to comb through her records and is working with law enforcement to see if she embezzled money.
"I trusted her completely there," he told the Clarion-Ledger of the woman who was employed there since 1999. "My biggest concern is their daughter and their future."
Texas Equusearch, an organization that organizes searches to find missing people, has brought volunteers into southwestern Mississippi to look for Reed and contributed to the pool of $20,000 in reward money.
The sheriff's office injected a small dose of optimism in the search for on Wednesday when WAPT reported that Sheriff Harold Jones said, "I think she is alive, but things are not playing out."
Some articles have reported that authorities think Reed was abducted, but a spokesman for the Bureau of Investigations told HuffPost his office hasn't determined if foul play was involved.