NEWTON,NC (WBTV) – The District Attorney's Office in Catawba County has begun the process of sifting through the investigative file in the Zahra Baker case, a process that could take weeks.
The file is "probably the largest I can remember," said Hickory Police Major Clyde Deal. The file details everything that local investigators found, tested, and sent off. There are 117 DVD's with recorded interviews, some involving stepmother Elisa baker and Zahra's father Adam.
Full Coverage: Follow the Zahra Baker case from the beginning
There are also 65 cd's with maps, photographs and other documents. In addition to all that is a cd with 11 thousand pages of information. The District Attorney's Office says it is still waiting for the file from the State Bureau of Investigations.
Many of the interviews will have to be transcribed, and everything else will have to be printed. Officials say it could bring the total page count to 30,000. The state is being asked to help in the matter and the files may be taken to Raleigh to be uploaded into a state server and printed.
Hickory Mayor Rudy Wright said Monday that many people have come up to him and asked why it is taking so long for someone to be charged in the case.
"People are frustrated." Wright has a poster sized photograph of Zahra hanging on the outside of his business on Fairgrove Church Road. "We don't want her to be forgotten and maybe is there is a child in trouble somewhere and an adult knows about it, maybe seeing the picture will prompt them to do something about it."
As for the case file, Eric Farr, spokesman for the District Attorney's Office said "now we begin the process of evaluating this case to determine what evidence we have and what applicable charges can be filed."
Major Deal said there is no timetable for a decision. "There is absolutely no reason to rush this thing because there's not any second chances and we have to get it right the first time."