A vehicle believed to belong to Brissa Romero, 17, of Carpentersville, (inset) was located in a pond near Executive Way and Lakeview Parkway in Vernon Hills Monday afternoon. | Background Photo: Max Weingardt; Insets: Provided

Officials say a vehicle believed to belong to 17-year-old Brissa Romero, who has been missing for a week, was located submerged in a pond in Vernon Hills.

The Vernon Hills Police Department and Carpentersville Police Department said in a joint statement that they refined their search area for Romero, 17, of Carpentersville to the area of Executive Way and Lakeview Parkway in Vernon Hills.

“This is an ongoing investigation, and the public is requested to avoid the area,” the statement said.

The Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) was activated late Monday morning and brought fire departments from throughout Lake County and McHenry County to the area.

Fire crews consisting of divers, sonar equipment and boats were seen gathering near a pond at the intersection.

A vehicle believed to belong to Brissa Romero was located in a pond near Executive Way and Lakeview Parkway in Vernon Hills Monday afternoon as first responders conducted a search. | Photo: Max Weingardt

Fire equipment was staged in the parking lot of an office building next to the pond.

Vernon Hills Deputy Police Chief Shannon Holubetz announced around 2 p.m. Monday that the two police departments would be hosting a news conference at 4 p.m.

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Holubetz said the press conference will be to discuss recent developments in the case, including the “likely recovery” of the girl’s Nissan Rogue.

Witnesses reported Ernie’s Wrecker Service arrived at the scene and is in the process of pulling a vehicle out of the pond.

Romero has been missing since December 4, according to Carpentersville Deputy Police Chief Kevin Stankowitz.

Stankowitz said Romero was seen on surveillance video that day while visiting a family member in Des Plaines.

She was seen a short time later on surveillance video again at her work in Schaumburg to pick up an iPad.

Family and friends of Brissa Romero, 17, of Carpentersville, held a prayer vigil and gathering at Milwaukee Avenue and Route 45 in Vernon Hills Sunday evening as the search continues for the missing teenager who vanished last week. | Photo: Craig / Captured News

Romero then left for a holiday work party that was taking place on the evening of December 4 at Bowlero in Vernon Hills.

No one at the party ever saw the girl, Stankowitz said. Electronic devices belonging to Romero were tracked to the vicinity of Bowlero.

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The Carpentersville Police Department said they have been working closely with the girl’s family to develop further leads.

Stankowitz said Romero does not have a history of running away from home.

She is a graduate of Barrington High School and a current student at Harper College in Palatine.

She drives a gray 2008 Nissan Rogue with Illinois license plate CZ64618.

The girl’s older sister, Dulce Romero, said their family is “desperately searching for Brissa.”

Brissa Romero, 17, was reported missing earlier last week to the Carpentersville Police Department and officials say she had planned to attend a holiday work party in Vernon Hills but went missing along with her vehicle, which has a distinct sticker on the rear. | Provided Photos

The Carpentersville Police Department, Vernon Hills Police Department and Department of Homeland Security assisted in an extensive search on Friday.

The search took place near Bowlero in Vernon Hills and investigators used drones as part of an aerial search.

Local ponds in the area were surveyed looking for signs of the girl’s 2008 Nissan Rogue or any signs that a vehicle entered the water, Stankowitz said.

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Officers patrolled other areas and hotels searching for Romero and her vehicle.

License plate readers were checked for any recent detections of Romero’s vehicle and the Illinois Tollway Authority checked for IPASS transponder activations.

Brissa Romero, 17, was reported missing earlier last week to the Carpentersville Police Department and officials say she had planned to attend a holiday work party in Vernon Hills but went missing. | Provided Photo

Police officials said late Saturday afternoon that an updated digital analysis of her social media accounts revealed no outgoing activity since Monday.

The girl’s family also announced a $14,000 reward for any information that leads to the safe return of their daughter.

Family and friends held a vigil Sunday afternoon into the evening along Route 21 near Route 45 on the border of Vernon Hills and Lincolnshire.

Attendees chanted “Bring Brissa home” and held up signs to passing motorists. “160 hours since we last saw her,” one of the posters read.