University Police Reducing Search For Joan Webster

Harvard police have reduced their efforts to find Joan L. Webster, a second-year student at the Graduate School of Design, who has been missing for more than a month.

Harvard, Saugus and state police involved in the investigation have recently uncovered no new leads, Saul L. Chafin, chief of University Police, said last night.

As a result, Chafin said, he has been forced to reduce his department's commitment to the search, which once stood at eight officers working full time on the investigation. Chafin declined to say how many Harvard officers remain on the case.

But Chafin stressed that state police and police in Saugus, where Webster's pocket-book and wallet were found in a marsh, are continuing an active investigation.

"There has been no new information, no new leads, and no luck," Chafin said.

The 25-year-old Webster was last seen November 28 in the baggage claim area of Eastern Airlines in Logan Airport. She was returning to Harvard on a flight from Newark, N.J., after spending the Thanksgiving holiday with her family in Glen Ridge, N.J.