Local News

Police: Missing woman seen at gas station after leaving RDU; no evidence she is under 'distress'

Posted June 29

— After reviewing video footage from a Shell gas station in Wake Forest, RDU police said Thursday there is no evidence that a missing 24-year-old woman is under any distress.

Allison Cope was reported missing on Monday after she clocked out for a break from her job at a Terminal 2 Starbucks. Cope took a scheduled break at 3 p.m. but did not return. She was reported missing around 7 p.m.

Cope was seen on video at a Shell gas station at 942 Durham Rd. at about 4:15 p.m. on Monday. Airport police have thoroughly reviewed the video and there is no evidence that she is under any distress, or that any crime was committed at the airport or anywhere else on the airport campus.

Allison Cope

Family members said Cope's phone and bag were found at the airport, but her car keys and debit card were missing from her bag.

She was seen going down the escalator and leaving Terminal 2 with just keys in her hand, presumably to run to her car for a minute, according to friends.

RDU Police continue to work closely with the State Bureau of Investigation, Federal Bureau of Investigation, City of Raleigh Police Department, Durham County Sherriff’s Office, Wake County Sherriff’s Office and the Transportation Security Administration.

Fadel Alabdi works at the Shell station that put up a missing person flyer on the door. He said, from the surveillance video, it did not appear Cope was in distress or distracted.

"She just walked into the bathroom for a couple of minutes, that's it, she walked back outside," he said. "She didn't purchase anything."

Justin Farrell and Sarah Kosinksi, two of Cope's friends, were also assisting in the search. Farrell said they hired a helicopter to search Falls Lake on Thursday.

"We’re determined to find her whatever it takes, whatever it costs," he said.

Police said Cope was last seen wearing a black HMS Host-branded Starbucks polo shirt, blue jeans and black sneakers.

Friends believe she was running to her car in the employee lot to get something on her break, and something happened to her.

Family from the west coast released a statement regarding her disappearance: "This is an extremely difficult time for our entire family. It's difficult being 3,000 miles away. We are in constant contact with all law enforcement agencies involved."

"Nothing is more important to us than Allison."

Anyone with information about Cope should contact RDU Police at 919-840-7510 or call 911.


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  • Dan Homiller Jun 30, 10:47 a.m.
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    To do what? It's not like her family from 3,000 miles away is likely to know her favorite hiding spots.

  • Mary Holland Jun 30, 9:08 a.m.
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    As far as her family not coming, they may not have the money to fly over here. Of course if it was my child, I would find a way.

  • Mary Holland Jun 30, 9:05 a.m.
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    View quoted thread

  • Johnny Grindstaff Jun 30, 8:46 a.m.
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    Much odd about this and the reporting. She's been missing since Monday and the family is still on the west coast? You would think they'd fly back immediately. No 24 year old is going to leave behind her cell phone if she left willingly, so I suspect foul play. The store clerk said she was along in the car, but an abductor could have been ducked down. Though, why wouldn't she signal to the clerk or tell him to call 911 when she was in the store? It was reported she took her debit card, which is odd if she was just running out to her car to get something as was mentioned by coworkers, and after a week why no reporting on whether there is any debit card activity? Very unusual behavior all around. Hoping for her safe return and some answers as to what is going on.

  • Sara Hauser Jun 29, 8:27 p.m.
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    Something fishy here🐠

  • Mark Card Jun 29, 8:21 p.m.
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    I grew up in WF and have stopped for gas at this station, and I would only stop here if I were headed west on HWY98 from US1 towards Durham, which goes past Falls Lake, since the station is on the right and easier to get in and out of maybe than that very busy Kangaroo Express gas station on the opposite side. Hope she's ok...

  • Casey Savelli Jun 29, 4:45 p.m.
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    I agree ... this gets more strange everyday! :(

  • Rodney Hill Jun 29, 4:29 p.m.
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    So I hope she's found safe.

    Why would her friends rent a helicopter to look in Falls Lake? That's the most random thing I've ever heard of... Someone goes missing here...lets search a lake 10 miles away... Did they search Harris Lake, Lake Crabtree and Jordan Lakes too? Too weird.

  • Casey Savelli Jun 29, 3:20 p.m.
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    What in the world??