A 9-year-old Florida boy whose mother said had been kidnapped by two men who ambushed their vehicle Thursday night has been found dead.
"The Florida AMBER Alert for Alejandro Ripley has been cancelled,” the Florida Department of Law Enforcement announced in a statement on Friday morning.
“We are very sad to report that the child was found deceased.”
On Thursday, Alejandro, who has autism and is non-verbal, was kidnapped from his vehicle from the intersection of SW 158th Avenue and Kendall Drive in Miami, the Miami-Dade Police said in a statement.
“The child was abducted by two unknown black males driving an unknown, light blue 4-door sedan,” states the AMBER Alert issued for him.
The child was wearing a blue Captain America shirt, black shorts and black Crocs.
One of his alleged kidnappers may have been wearing all black clothing, a black bandanna and a face mask, the alert says.
The boy’s mother, Patricia Ripley, 47, told police she was driving with her son Thursday night at about 8:47 p.m. when she noticed she was being followed by a car she didn’t recognize, a Miami-Dade police report says.
“The driver of the unknown vehicle attempted to side-swipe her vehicle, forcing her to veer onto SW 158 Avenue,” the report says.
“The vehicle then blocked her in while a male passenger ambushed her, demanding drugs,” it says.
When she told them she didn’t have any drugs, she said one of the men grabbed her phone and then the boy before speeding off, according to a Miami Dade police report.
Police launched a massive search for the boy.
Early Friday, the boy's body was found near a lake at the Miccosukee Golf and Country Club, not far from where he had been abducted, the Sun-Sentinel reports.
Police towed the mother's van to comb it for possible evidence, the Sun-Sentinel reports. She has spoken with police, the outlet reports.
Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Sign up for PEOPLE’s free True Crime newsletter for breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases.
“We are very, very sad," Boris Ugartechea, a neighbor and friend of the family, told CBS Miami.
Ugartechea described Alejandro as "a very, very happy kid. He was always playing, doing something with his little laptop."
Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact CrimeStoppers at 305-471-TIPS (8477) or 866-471-8477.
Source: Read Full Article