Irish police believe American tourist Kelly Jones was in a distressed condition when she went missing in Donegal and are awaiting psychological and medical reports before they speak to her.
The 41-year-old Jones was found, after a five day rescue, bid in a holiday home just 300 meters from the search centre in the west Donegal village of Glencolumbkille.
Police now believe the Georgia native entered the house alone at least two days before she was discovered.
They have also ascertained that she was in a distressed state before she left her hostel to go hill-walking last Saturday, 10 days into her Irish vacation.
Kelly’s father Ricky arrives in Ireland on Friday morning and will speak to his daughter, recovering in Sligo General hospital, before police interview her.
Local officers have now confirmed that Kelly was sighted in a number of different areas around Glencolumbkille before she was found. They believe she may have lost her way and become perplexed because of a psychological condition.
American tourist ‘vanishes into thin air’ on Donegal mountains
Inspector Sylvie Henry told the Irish Times: “Kelly was clearly distressed at the time of her discovery.
“Not every reported sighting of a redhead was the missing Kelly but we do realize it was her who was sighted a number of times. That was away in the opposite direction to where she was found.
“We are 150 per cent sure she was not held against her will. We believe the earliest she could have been in that building was Monday night, but where she was the other nights is really a mystery.”
Local police superintendent Mick Finan also told reporters that the holiday home had been searched twice over the weekend.
Officers found a pane of glass had been broken at the rear of the holiday home between Monday evening and Wednesday morning when Kelly was found alive.
They also believe that Kelly entered the building of her own volition. “The only person who can tell us where she was is Kelly herself. We haven’t spoken to her yet,”said the superintendent.
“We are going to be guided by her medical team in Sligo as to when we can speak to her.
“The search was concentrated on the mountains around the area because the last confirmed sighting had been there.
“The grounds around the rectory had been searched but we hadn’t searched the house. We hadn’t expected someone to be actually in a house.
“This house is a holiday home and it was locked up. Kelly was found lying on a couch in the house.”
Kelly was due to check out of the hostel the day after she went missing. Locals said she was in a distressed state when last seen around 5pm that afternoon.
Her family have thanked the rescue teams and volunteers involved in the search for Kelly.
Cousin Dana Bailey said: “Thanks so much for not giving up the search for my cousin Kelly. Our family greatly appreciates everyone’s efforts.”