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Still no sign of teen

Nearly three weeks have passed since Tarasha “Pooh” Benjamin left her house to go to a nearby flea market.

Still, experts from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children continue to work in the search for the 17-year-old Selma teenager.

Linda Benjamin, one of the coordinators of the family efforts to find Benjamin, said the experts, a team of two, have asked the family to discontinue its search and allow the specialists to continue.

But the family continues to gather information, said Angela Benjamin, a Selma City Council member and relative of the missing girl.

“They asked us to keep doing our information search and we’re still collecting data,” the council member said.

Tarasha Benjamin was last see by her mother at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 26, at home. She wore blue shorts, a striped turquoise, yellow and white short-sleeve shirt and possibly she wore silver sandals, according to the family.

She has her nickname, “Pooh,” tattooed on her upper right arm.

The gray Mazda Tribute she drove was discovered abandoned on the Cecil Jackson Bypass. The truck had two missing windows on the driver’s side and a broken door on the driver’s side.

Family members have said they do not believe police acted quickly enough after Benjamin’s family filed a report.

Now, officers are questioning person of interest, Angela Benjamin said.

Additionally, law enforcement agencies from as far away as Huntsville have responded to the call to search for Tarasha.

Dallas County Emergency Management Agency Interim Director Rhonda Abbott said divers, cadaver dogs and their handlers, pilots with helicopters and other police and emergency specialists have spent most of the week scouring the county, creeks and rivers, following up on tips from the family.

“They are doing this at no cost,” Abbott said of the outside help.

The family asks people to report any information they might have to Linda Benjamin at 419-0626; Tosha Benjamin, 419-4381; or Wayne House, 267-8007.