CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Five years after her disappearance, the search for Asha Degree is still alive.

The 9-year-old Shelby girl was last seen walking near her home in the middle of the night. Witnesses spotted someone who matches her description along Highway 18 on Feb. 14, 2000.

A year later, her black book bag was found alongside Highway 18 in Burke County.

A new tip prompted authorities to dig through an area just south of Shelby. Officers began sifting through dirt with three cadaver dogs around 9 a.m. Monday.

The search was called off by 5 p.m. after nothing was turned up.

Authorities will not reveal any information about the source of the tip, except that it came from an inmate.