Real Estate Agents Fear for Safety After Colleague 'Abducted'

Beverly Carter, 50, went missing Thursday after showing client a home.

ByABC News
September 29, 2014, 4:35 PM

— -- The alleged abduction of Arkansas real estate agent Beverly Carter, who vanished after showing a house to prospective customer, has her colleagues nervous about going to meet clients.

"They're scared and I need someone to give them some reassurance," said Brenda Rhoads, the principal broker at the real estate company where Carter worked.

Rhoads, who is good friends with Carter and worked with her for nine years, told ABC News that she arranged for a police detective to come and speak to her colleagues at Crye Leike Real Estate Services today to try and calm their fears even though Carter is still missing.

Some have said that Carter, a 50-year-old grandmother, should not have met the prospective buyer alone, but Rhoads dismissed those critiques, saying, "That's our job."

"I would say that 80 percent of my agents are women, but the men, they are devastated too," she said.

Little Rock police have apprehended the suspect in Carter's disappearance, Arron Lewis, and he spent much of today being questioned by the Pulaski County Sheriff's Department.

But Carter is still missing.

"The search crews are still out there," Sheriff's Department spokesman Lt. Carl Minden told ABC. "They've been out there since the day she went missing and they're continuing even though he's in custody. They're still going through their search patterns."

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Minden said that investigators might be able to alter their search depending on information gathered in their meetings with Lewis, but "it hasn't (happened) as of yet."

According to her work website, Carter is the third-ranking real estate agent in Arkansas and is a member of a local industry board.

"She's the type of person who would do anything for anybody," Rhoads said.

"Beverly's the type of person, she's very bubbly. Beverly's laugh is contagious you could hear it throughout the office," she said.

Rhoads said that Beverly has been married to her husband Carl since she was just 16. The couple has two grown sons who live nearby with their four grandchildren and a fifth is on the way. They've lived in Arkansas for more than 30 years, and all three of their sons –- one died in a car crash about a decade ago –- were born in the state and they spend much of their free time on the lake near their home.

"Carl fishes a little bit, but Beverly mostly likes just being on the water. She's what you'd call a sun goddess," Rhoads said. "Beverly's beautiful. She's got the most beautiful smile. She's beautiful inside and out."

Both friends and investigators are holding onto hope that they will be able to find Carter and when they do, they think she'll appreciate how the missing posters mistakenly identified her as 49 rather than her real age, 50.

"Beverly turned 50 last December and had a huge blow out party for it, but afterwards she said she wanted to be 49 forever," Rhoads said. "Her daughter-in-law was laughing about it now saying Beverly would love it that they're telling people she's 49… All of us agents were like 'Really y'all? We had that big party. Are we going to do it again?'"