Relatives of a former Sacramento woman and her boyfriend who were reported missing in Peru hope to receive confirmation today that the two are safe.
Stacy Fingers of Antelope said the family received a call Tuesday from the U.S. Embassy in Lima, Peru, saying that Garrett Hand had called police after someone recognized him and told him that he and Fingers' sister, Jamie Neal, were being sought.
"We still have no confirmation or proof," Fingers said. She said the couple are expected to reach a location today where they can contact their families.
According to various news reports, Hand and Neal, both 25, were discovered riding on a boat on the Napo River near the Ecuador-Peru border Tuesday.
Hand's sister, Alena Hand of Sacramento, said Monday that the couple left in late November for a four-month bicycle trek through South America. They had been posting on Facebook almost daily until Jan. 25. Since then she said, there had been no financial, email or Facebook activity.
Concern for their safety was heightened given a warning posted Feb. 13 on the U.S. Embassy website in Lima of a potential kidnapping threat in the Cusco area.
Jeff Jerge, owner of a bicycle shop in the Bay Area community of El Sobrante, where Neal worked as a bicycle mechanic, had announced a $4,000 reward for information about the couple.