Battle Creek Police are following a potential lead regarding the identity of the driver of the vehicle currently believed to be submerged where the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo rivers converge.
Sunday morning police took a missing persons report from the girlfriend of a 31-year-old Detroit-area man who has connections in Battle Creek. He was last heard from early Saturday morning, shortly before the vehicle is believed to have crashed into the Kalamazoo River from Dickman Road, near Capital Avenue.
The bumper found in the river during Saturday's search was determined to be a match to the girlfriend's rented Hyundai vehicle. Attempts to locate the man via the location of his cell phone placed him in the area where the vehicle crashed into the river.
Video footage from a nearby business showed the vehicle in the river early Saturday morning, floating backward. Battle Creek and area township and county agencies spent more than 12 hours searching on Saturday, and additional time on Sunday, attempting to locate the vehicle.
They believe a dive magnet used on Sunday may have latched onto the vehicle, and that location is marked while officials work to line up the equipment needed to remove the vehicle without using divers. Calhoun County divers on Saturday found dangerous conditions due to the fast current at the rivers' convergence. Officials did not dive on Sunday due to the dangers, and plan to remove the vehicle, when found, without using divers.