A Columbia University dental student and former local comedian not seen since April 1 has her family and friends concerned and looking for her.
Police said that Jiwon Lee, 29, was last seen by her roommate about 8:30 p.m. in their apartment on West 98th Street.
The Columbia Spectator, which first reported Lee's disappearance, said that Lee had a phone conversation with her brother — a student at the Columbia University Medical Center — the night she disappeared.
Friends also said that police were able to ping her cellphone to a tower in Washington Heights, but were unable to further track her whereabouts.
Lee was a staple in the New York City comedy scene before pursuing her career in dentistry. Her friends from the scene and from school began using social media over the weekend to circulate a Facebook page as a resource for information and updates on Lee.
NYC please help find my friend Jiwon Lee. She's been missing since the 1st. https://t.co/gR1p2RC1TI
— Joe Mande (@JoeMande) April 6, 2014
A comedian named Jiwon Lee many of us started out with in NY has gone missing. Please help find her. http://t.co/bk3PMdnbRg
— Max Silvestri (@maxsilvestri) April 6, 2014
On Sunday, Lee's brother and family launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for a private detective, committing any funds left over as a reward for information on Lee's whereabouts.
As of early Sunday evening, 117 donors had pledged more than $6,100 within three hours, with a goal of $150,000.
A fourth-year student at the dental school, Lee recently served as president of the American Student Dental Association.
Police describe Lee as 5-foot-2 and 120 pounds, with black hair and dark eyes.
Cops are asking for anyone with information about Lee to call the department’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS, or to submit tips online.
Follow Chester Jesus Soria on Twitter@chestersoria