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On a summer day nearly 30 years ago, a man used the promise of bubble gum and ice cream to entice 3-year-old Rachael Runyan away from a Sunset park.

Inside the girl's home, located less than 15 feet away, her mother was unaware of the abduction as she prepared Sloppy Joes for her children's lunch on Aug. 26, 1982.

"It is like some demon swooped out of the sky, and we have never seen her again," Elaine Runyan-Simmons said this week of her daughter.

The girl's almost unrecognizable body was discovered 24 days later, naked and hog-tied, in a stream in Morgan County.

Runyan-Simmons has never stopped hoping the killer will be found, and police are still looking.

Sunset Police Chief Ken Eborn said this week that detectives are currently checking out a former Utah resident — now living in Pennsylvania — who has been a long-time person of interest in the case.

The girl's mother believes the Pennsylvania man may be her daughter's killer.

"This same guy keeps surfacing," Runyan-Simmons said. "You can't help but keep your eye on him."

Eborn said Rachael's abductor talked with children at the park playground for at least 15 minutes before enticing Rachael away, according to police interviews with the girl's 5-year-old brother, Justin, and a 10-year-old child, who were also playing at the park.

The children described the man who took Rachael as a black male, 25-35 years old, about 6 feet tall, with a medium build and a mustache. The children said the man drove away in a four-door, dark-blue car with wood-grain stripes on the side. No adults were at the park to provide a description.

Despite physical similarities between the Pennsylvania man and descriptions of the kidnapper, Eborn called the new lead not as promising as he once thought and said the Pennsylvania man is not the only person they are watching.

Out of 100 possible suspects, Eborn said, this man is in their "top 20."

"I think we would be doing a disservice to this case if we focused on him and him alone," Eborn said.

The man, now 50 years old, came to the attention of police again because of an Amber Alert issued last year in Pennsylvania after he allegedly took his child following an argument with a girlfriend. The child was safely returned and the man, was later charged with domestic violence related crimes. He also has a violent criminal history in Utah, according to court records.

Police, who have chosen not to release the man's name, say he lived in the Sunset area at the time of Rachael's abduction, and also has lived in New Mexico, Arkansas, and Pennsylvania.

Police have organized 10 full three-ring binders of case information from their own city and outside agencies, including Ogden and Davis County, and even the FBI. Police also have about 10 banker boxes full of phoned-in leads.

In 2007, Eborn used a grant from the Utah Attorney General's Office to pay for DNA testing of items found near the girl's body.

Eborn said this week that although he has tentative results of the DNA tests, they have not helped advance the investigation.

A $58,000 reward has been posted for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of Rachael's killer.

Runyan-Simmons said it is "hard to be patient," but all she can do is believe that one day someone will come forward.

"I love her very much, I miss her," Runyan Simmons said of her daughter. "There isn't a day I haven't thought of her and honored her."

Twitter: @CimCity