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Amber Alert Suspect's Car Found in Idaho After Possible Sighting

License plates were removed from vehicle, which was covered in brush.

ByABC News
August 9, 2013, 11:42 AM

Aug. 9, 2013— -- A car belonging to murder and kidnapping suspect James DiMaggio was found today covered in brush near Cascade, Idaho, San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore said this afternoon.

The blue Nissan Versa was found without license plates, but authorities were able to determine that the vehicle belonged to DiMaggio of Boulevard, Calif., through its identification number, Gore said

The discovery marks a significant break in the case as the manhunt for DiMaggio, 40, and missing teen Hannah Anderson, 16, entered a sixth day today.

Authorities were tipped off to the remote area, located about 70 miles from Boise, after a group of horseback riders Wednesday reported seeing a man and a teenager matching the description of DiMaggio and Anderson.Authorities began a ground search of the area Thursday, Gore said.

The group said the man and teenager "both appeared to be in good health," Gore said.

He said bomb and arson technicians are now examining the car. Police said late Thursday that DiMaggio might be armed with explosives and could potentially use them to rig his vehicle or a hideout, according to ABC News San Diego affiliate KGTV-TV.

DiMaggio is suspected of killing Christina Anderson, 44, at his California home Sunday and then abducting Hannah, 16, and possibly her brother, Ethan, 8, after setting the house on fire.

While an Amber Alert remains in effect for both children, authorities said it's possible a second body recovered from the home where Anderson was found could belong to her son, Ethan.

"We're hopeful within the next day or so [we'll have confirmation], but there has been some difficulty," Capt. Duncan Fraser of the San Diego Sheriff's Department told "Because of the intense heat and the fire, it has become very problematic finding usable DNA on the body."

Until authorities have confirmation that the body is Ethan, Fraser said, an Amber Alert will remain in effect for both children.

DiMaggio and Christina Anderson "were in a close platonic relationship," according to the sheriff's department, and officials said DiMaggio might have had an "infatuation" with Hannah.