A group of volunteers searching for Mandy Matula on Sunday morning found several small pieces of facial tissue paper with blood on them.
The tissue was found about 10 a.m. around Scenic Heights Road near Eden Prairie Road (County Road 4). As a result, police closed off the area, including the portion of Scenic Heights Road between Red Oak Drive and Village Woods Drive, to investigate further.
Police have since said the tissue appeared to be unrelated to the Eden Prairie woman’s disappearance.
In addition, items of interest discovered in Carver County resulted in a search there Sunday, but did not result in any significant developments, police said.
Matula, 24, vanished after leaving her family home late Wednesday. Her family reported her missing about 8:30 a.m. Thursday after she didn’t show up at her job.
She was last seen with David M. Roe, 24, a man with whom she was trying to end a relationship. Police had hoped Roe could tell them what happened to her, so they called him in for an interview. He agreed to talk to a detective, but shot himself in the head after pulling into the parking lot of the Eden Prairie Police Department about 1:30 p.m. Thursday. He was pronounced dead the next morning.
Police, family, friends and strangers began searching for Matula on Thursday afternoon after hearing that she had been seen in Eden Prairie’s Miller Park with Roe about 1:30 a.m. Police have also said Roe likely traveled in Stearns County after he was last seen with Matula, and the county sheriff has conducted searches there.
On Saturday, searchers found an unspent bullet near Miller Park that police are calling possible evidence in the case.
Eden Prairie police said investigators were not disclosing whether the caliber of the bullet matched the handgun that Roe used to shoot himself.
Ballistics tests were underway Saturday on the bullet and on Roe’s gun. Police said they also were conducting DNA tests on the bullet and on several other pieces of possible evidence found Saturday.
Roe was a star football player at Eden Prairie High School and went on to briefly play football at the University of St. Thomas. Matula, who also graduated from Eden Prairie High School, played softball for the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
Weekend searches for two other missing women, Kira Trevino of St. Paul and Danielle Jelinek of Oakdale, didn’t turn up any new information.