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Originally published March 16, 2010 at 8:03 PM | Page modified March 17, 2010 at 10:43 AM

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Search called off for missing mom, son

Despite searches by divers, boats and aircraft, investigators have yet to turn up any solid leads in the weekend disappearance of a Kitsap County woman and her 8-year-old son.

The Associated Press

Update, 7:47 a.m., Mar. 17: The Thurston County Sheriff's Office has called off the search for Shantina "Kat" Smiley who disappeared Saturday night with her young son while driving from Kitsap County to Southwest Washington.

Her van was found partially-submerged on a back road near Olympia, but there was no sign of Smiley or her 8-year-old son, Azriel. Thurston County chief criminal Deptuty Jim Chamberlain confirmed early Wednesday that the search had been called off. (Seattle Times staff)

Despite searches by divers, boats and aircraft, investigators have yet to turn up any solid leads in the weekend disappearance of a Kitsap County woman and her 8-year-old son.

Smiley, 29, of Silverdale, and her son were going from their Silverdale home to her stepfather's house in Southwest Washington when they vanished.

The van Smiley drove was found Sunday, abandoned and partially submerged in water on a Puget Sound beach in the Olympia area.

"It's almost like she vanished out of thin air," said Chelsie Woodard, 32, of Castle Rock, Cowlitz County, whose father used to be married to Smiley's mother.

Investigators were talking to people who know Smiley and those who may have met her as she drove the back roads Saturday night.

Update, 6:48 a.m., Mar. 17: The father of Azriel Carver has arrived in Washington to look for them.

Jay Carver arrived at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport from New York late Tuesday and said he planned to rent a car and drive to Olympia, where his former partner and their boy were last seen on Saturday night.

He told Seattle television stations he's frazzled, and he wants to get out in the woods and just start looking for Smiley and Carver, even though divers and investigators have turned up no sign of them.

Smiley's fiancé, Robb Simmons, said Tuesday that she is a recovering alcoholic who had relapsed last week, KING-TV reported.

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Simmons said she had been under stress. He's been having health issues and fears he might have cancer, and suggested last week that they wed, he added.

But he said he doesn't believe the relapse played any role in her disappearance.

"The idea she would stop and drink is not a realistic thing," he told KING-TV. "I do not see her doing that ... putting herself at risk, getting in trouble with the law, putting her son at risk."

Carie Tonovitz, of Silverdale, said in an e-mail Tuesday that Smiley is a good mother who is very wrapped up in her son's life. Tonovitz, Smiley and Simmons are den leaders of their sons' Cub Scout group.

Detectives say they're trying to learn all they can about Smiley's emotional state.

"I'm trying to be optimistic. I'm trying to be hopeful," Simmons told KOMO Radio on Tuesday. "I just want to hear that she's safe."

Woodard described her stepsister as smart, nice and happy and her nephew as outgoing and energetic. She said she and Smiley had not been in touch recently but planned to catch up.

"She likes to do family things and outdoor type things just like anybody in Washington state," Woodard said. "There's nothing out of the ordinary about her."

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