It has now been more than two weeks since Sarm Heslop vanished in the U.S. Virgin Islands from the boat owned by her boyfriend, Ryan Bane.
Bane has laid low since then, refusing to answer questions by police and resisting efforts to search his boat. But now Jeff Jones, who lives in the U.S. Virgin Islands and has assisted in the search for Heslop, said he spotted Bane on the catamaran Wednesday morning.
“This morning I did happen to see Mr. Bane on the vessel, standing inside the salon,” Jones told “America’s Newsroom” Wednesday.
Jones also said that the timeline of the night Heslop went missing is hard for him to understand.
“We keep trying to figure out how to fill in this timeline with all the empty spaces,” he said Wednesday. “It’s a puzzle. The more we dig, we’ll find more pieces and eventually put it together, but we gotta keep digging.”
The couple went to dinner on the evening on March 7 before returning to Bane’s boat, Siren Song, which was moored roughly 50 yards offshore in Frank Bay.
The manager of the restaurant where the couple ate dinner, 420 to Center, confirmed that they left around 10 p.m. due to the island’s curfew and did not notice anything out of the ordinary.
Bane awoke around 2:30 a.m. on March 8 and discovered that Heslop was missing, at which point he called 911 then “traveled to meet members of the [Virgin Islands Police Department] to give a statement regarding Sarm,” according to his lawyer.
The VIPD told Bane to contact the U.S. Coast Guard, which he did roughly 10 hours later at 11:46 a.m.
“As part of the search and rescue effort, the Coast Guard went aboard the vessel to interview and gather information from the reporting source,” a Coast Guard spokesperson previously told Fox News. “Later, the Coast Guard returned to the vessel to conduct a standard vessel safety check to ensure proper equipment and compliance with applicable rules and regulations for vessel type and operation.”
The Coast Guard and local authorities found no sign of Heslop in the surrounding waters or on land despite an extensive search.
The search continues though, and the FBI is now assisting local authorities in their efforts.
“We can confirm that we are supporting local law enforcement in their investigative efforts,” an FBI spokeswoman told Fox News on Wednesday. “All we are doing is providing support in any way that they need. For the most part it’s really just support of their investigation.”
Jones said search efforts recently have focused on the surrounding lands, using drones to map out areas that can’t be reached by foot.