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Harmony Montgomery disappearance narrowed to 13-day window

January 24, 2022 GMT
Kayla Montgomery, right, stepmother of missing girl Harmony Montgomery, sits beside her attorney Paul Garrity, left, in Hillsborough County Superior Court North, in Manchester, N.H., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, where she pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of lying last year that Harmony was in her household to claim food stamp benefits. (Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Kayla Montgomery, right, stepmother of missing girl Harmony Montgomery, sits beside her attorney Paul Garrity, left, in Hillsborough County Superior Court North, in Manchester, N.H., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, where she pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of lying last year that Harmony was in her household to claim food stamp benefits. (Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Kayla Montgomery, right, stepmother of missing girl Harmony Montgomery, sits beside her attorney Paul Garrity, left, in Hillsborough County Superior Court North, in Manchester, N.H., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, where she pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of lying last year that Harmony was in her household to claim food stamp benefits. (Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
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Kayla Montgomery, right, stepmother of missing girl Harmony Montgomery, sits beside her attorney Paul Garrity, left, in Hillsborough County Superior Court North, in Manchester, N.H., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, where she pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of lying last year that Harmony was in her household to claim food stamp benefits. (Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
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Kayla Montgomery, right, stepmother of missing girl Harmony Montgomery, sits beside her attorney Paul Garrity, left, in Hillsborough County Superior Court North, in Manchester, N.H., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, where she pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of lying last year that Harmony was in her household to claim food stamp benefits. (Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Investigators have narrowed the window for when a New Hampshire girl went missing to 13 days in late 2019, coinciding with the eviction of her father and stepmother and witness accounts of the family living in cars, the attorney general’s office said Monday.

Adam and Kayla Montgomery, together with two children of their own and Adam’s daughter, Harmony Montgomery, age 5 at the time, were evicted from a Manchester home on Nov. 27, 2019, the office said in a news release. Police searched the home earlier this month, but have released no further information.

“Multiple individuals have reported seeing Harmony with Adam and Kayla in the following days; however, by approximately December 6–10, 2019, Adam and Kayla apparently had only their two common children, and Harmony was no longer with them,” the office said.

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“This information leads police to believe that it was sometime during this window of approximately November 28–December 10, 2019, that Harmony Montgomery disappeared,” it said.

The witnesses reported that during that time, Adam and Kayla Montgomery and the children were homeless and living out of cars. The attorney general’s office provided a description and photos of a silver 2010 Chrysler Sebring and a dark blue 2006 Audi S4.

In court Monday during an appearance for Kayla Montgomery, Assistant Attorney General Jesse O’Neill told a judge “there’s no evidence” that Harmony Montgomery was with her mother, Crystal Sorey, after Thanksgiving 2019 — or long before that.

He said Harmony’s mother has been “extremely cooperative” in the investigation. Sorey first reported her daughter was missing last November, and that she had last seen her during a FaceTime conversation in Easter 2019.

Kayla Montgomery, 31, pleaded not guilty Monday to charges she lied last year that Harmony Montgomery was in her household to claim food stamp benefits.

O’Neill asked Monday that Kayla Montgomery’s $5,000 cash bail continue, saying she was a flight risk and “she knows what law enforcement is closing in on.”

Kayla Montgomery, now estranged from Adam Montgomery, told police on New Year’s Eve that she believed the girl was returned to her mother in 2019 after that Thanksgiving and never saw or heard about her again.

“Whatever is suggested to or alluded to by the state is not before the court. It is not an allegation facing Ms. Montgomery,” said her lawyer, Paul Garrity.

Garrity said Kayla Montgomery has appeared in court in past years on various misdemeanor charges and has strong ties to the Manchester area. He suggested she would qualify for release to be part of a residential program with her children that’s described on its website as offering “clinically-intensive rehab treatment” for substance use disorders.

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Kayla and Adam Montgomery’s children — they now have three — are currently living with Kayla Montgomery’s mother in Manchester. The judge approved converting Kayla Montgomery’s bail to personal recognizance “upon entry and successful completion” of the treatment program. The state would monitor her compliance, and she also would have to check in daily by phone with the Manchester Police Department.

Adam Montgomery, 31, was charged earlier this month with several counts, including failing to have Harmony in his custody. He pleaded not guilty and has been jailed without bail.

Manchester police said they last saw Harmony in September 2019, during a call to the house.

Police are still requesting help from the public in locating Harmony. Anyone with information can call 603-203-6060. Manchester police have also said a reward for information that helps find Harmony has also grown to $144,000. Harmony’s great-uncle also started a fundraising effort.