The Kirkland Police Department (KPD) is still searching for a woman who has been missing for almost a week.
At 4:15 p.m. on March 12, staff members of the Shumway Mansion Adult Family Home in the 114oo block of 99th Place Northeast in Kirkland noticed one of their residents was missing.
About 20-45 minutes passed before staff realized Samantha Ehrich snuck out one of the back doors. Family home staff alerted KPD and both parties conducted an area search.
“We expected to find her walking around the neighborhood, but that didn’t happen,” Det. Cpl. Cody Mann with KPD said.
Bulletins were sent out to all law enforcement agencies in the area with information about Ehrich.
Ehrich has been diagnosed with mental health disorders, as well as a traumatic brain injury (TBI). The 33-year-old female left the facility without any form of identification or cell phone. She is 5 feet, 7 inches tall and about 200 pounds, with blue eyes and brown, shoulder-length hair. Ehrich was last seen wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt and blue sweatpants with white piping.
On the morning of March 14, the owner of a market on Central Way in downtown Kirkland recognized Ehrich from a news flash that was broadcasted. The owner had seen her in the store at 4:52 p.m. on March 12 buying candy bars. Ehrich was then seen walking over to the transit center.
KPD has been working alongside King County Metro to determine her whereabouts. Detectives have also called various homeless shelters in hopes of locating Ehrich. The department did confirm that Ehrich’s name appeared on a register log at a homeless shelter in Seattle. She checked in on March 15 and departed the following day.
“What we do know is due to her mental state, due to her TBI, she certainly needs to be cared for full-time. She’s not able to care for herself,” Mann said.
As of March 18, Ehrich has gone six to seven days without her medication.
“What our fear is as time goes on, is her mental state will diminish more and more to the point where she’ll become non-verbal, based off of what has taken place in the past,” Mann said.
A similar situation happened years ago in California, where Ehrich was living on the streets for weeks before she was found. By that time, she was unable to verbally communicate.
“We’re hoping that somebody sees her and calls 911,” Mann said, adding that with the coronavirus pandemic, the streets are scarce, thus making eyewitnesses who can spot Ehrich scarce.