The FBI said Thursday that a person who claimed to be a boy who disappeared eight years ago was not the missing child, and media reported he was actually a 23-year-old man.
A person who claimed to be a 14-year-old boy was found wandering the streets of a Cincinnati, Ohio suburb on Wednesday. He had told police he was Timmothy Pitzen, who disappeared in 2011 aged six.
But ABC News reported he was actually 23-year-old Brian Michael Rini, citing police in Kentucky. The man told authorities he had been kidnapped and held against his will.
The FBI in Louisville, Kentucky, said Thursday DNA results proved the man found in Ohio was not Pitzen. “DNA results have been returned indicating the person in question is not Timmothy Pitzen,” the FBI said.
Pitzen’s grandmother said that despite today’s false alarm, the family still hopes to find him someday, according to ABC. “It’s been awful. We’ve been on tenterhooks,” she said of the family’s disappointment Thursday.
Of Rini, she said he had “obviously had a horrible time and felt the need to say he was someone else, and [I] hope that they can find his family.”
Meanwhile, the FBI added that “law enforcement has not and will not forget Timmothy, and we hope to one day reunite him with his family.” “Unfortunately, that day will not be today.”
Timmothy Pitzen’s mother, Amy Fry-Pitzen, took him out of school early one day in 2011 in their hometown of Aurora, Illinois, a Chicago suburb.
She drove around with him for several days and then checked into a motel, where she took her own life.
She left a note saying Timmothy was “safe” but no trace of the boy has ever been found. “You’ll never find him,” Amy Fry-Pitzen wrote.