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Fliers were on hand at a gathering to show support and hope for missing nursing student Michelle Hoang Thi Le in Hayward, Calif. on Friday, June 3, 2011. It has been one week since Le was last seen at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Hayward. Her car was later found about a half mile away from the medical center on Ponderosa Court where the gathering was held. (Dan Honda/Staff)

After receiving support from throughout the Bay Area, the family of a missing nursing student is asking the FBI to take a lead role in the investigation.

Michelle Le, of Union City, disappeared May 27 while on a break from Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Hayward. A spokeswoman for Le's family criticized the police in a statement Sunday and urged the FBI to step up its participation in the case.

"Our family believes the Hayward Police Department is not adequately staffed and do not have enough personnel to work on a missing person case," said Krystine Dinh, in the family's statement. "We have been assured they have personnel working 'around the clock,' yet only six personnel are assigned to the team, and of those, three recently went on vacation."

She said Le's apartment was searched four days after she was reported missing. In addition, Dinh was told evidence collected from Le's car would take two weeks to process, she said.

"Though the FBI received her computers early in the week, they did not receive her cellphone records until Thursday," Dinh said. "We believe that if personnel experienced in missing persons cases were assigned a lead role, evidence like her cell phone records would be analyzed expeditiously, and we would also see her picture and information posted on the FBI's website under the Missing Persons link."

Hayward police said they share the family's frustration and the sincere hope that Le will be found.


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"We are investigating several leads in the case, many of which we have been unable to release publicly so as to not jeopardize our efforts in locating Michelle," Lt. Roger Keener said in a statement. "We will not rest until Michelle's disappearance is solved."

Keener said the FBI has been involved in the case since it began and continues to support the investigation.

"We anticipate the possibility of providing a more detailed update on where we are with the case," he said, "most likely tomorrow afternoon."

The FBI issued a similar statement, reaffirming its commitment to working collaboratively with police to solve the case.

"We have been in constant contact with the Hayward Police since the onset of their investigation," said FBI spokeswoman Julianne Sohn in a statement. "We are working closely with them and we have made every appropriate resource available to them."

Staff writer Eric Kurhi contributed to this story.