Five-year-old Aramazd Andressian Jr. has been missing since late April, following a week-long visit with his non-custodial father, Aramazd Andressian Sr. The boy was first reported missing by his mother when her estranged husband didn’t bring him home at the agreed upon time. When police made contact with Aramazd Andressian Sr. on April 22, it was at a hospital. The California man had been found unconscious at a South Pasadena park and was suffering from minor injuries.
His 5-year-old son was nowhere to be found.
Andressian told police that he had taken prescription drugs that didn’t belong to him earlier in the morning of April 22. He claimed to have no memory of what had happened to his child, who had last been seen with his father and other family members at Disneyland two days prior, reports CNN.
“He did not remember what happened to his child or any details that were useful in locating his son.”
Since that day, police departments and volunteers across Southern California have worked in tangent in a desperate but ultimately unsuccessful effort to bring 5-year-old Aramazd Andressian Jr. home. On Friday, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department made a tragic announcement in the case: Aramazd Andressian Sr. had been arrested on suspicion of his son’s murder.
Father of South Pasadena boy Aramazd Andressian Jr. is arrested on suspicion of murdering his son in a case that has touched Ventura County. pic.twitter.com/J0RTcrqgkj
— Ventura County Star (@vcstar) June 24, 2017
This isn’t the first time that Andressian Sr. has been arrested in connection with his son’s disappearance. Early on in the investigation, he was arrested on allegations of child endangerment but was later released. Aramazd Andressian Sr. was taken into custody in Las Vegas is awaiting extradition back to Los Angeles.
At this point, authorities aren’t saying much about what led to Andressian’s arrest. It is unknown if the new evidence in the case may have prompted police to take action.
Let's hope this boy is found soon, Angie! ????
— Dario Witer (@DarioWiter1) June 24, 2017
Hopefully the dad will lead them to the body unless he did something more unthinkable like human trafficking
— Phil Devine (@phildevine1) June 24, 2017
What is known is that Aramazd Andressian Jr. is still missing. Investigators and search volunteers have been searching for the little boy since his disappearance was discovered on April 22. From the park where his father was found unconscious, to his father’s South Pasadena residence, to the homes of family members, the search for the boy has stretched across several counties and involved the efforts of hundreds of police officers.
Aramazd Andressian Sr. lawyered up not long after his son disappeared, and within a week of the child going missing, he released a statement through that attorney in an attempt to explain what had happened on April 22. According to Andressian Sr., he believes he may have been attacked while at the park. In his statement, he continued to attest to having no memory of what happened that day.
— Nicole Nishida (@lasdNicole) May 18, 2017
“I was at the park with my son, and then I found myself waking up in Huntington Memorial Hospital hours later. I can only speculate that I must have been attacked in the park, given my unresponsive state and subsequent physical condition. My family and I are heartbroken and grief-stricken that Aramazd Jr. is missing and may be in harm’s way.”
Ana Estevez, the mother of the missing boy, also made a public statement in May. Rather than speaking through a lawyer, she spoke directly to the public. She begged for help in bringing her missing child home and even spoke directly to Aramazd Andressian Jr.
“Be brave, honey. Know that Mama and a lot of people are working hard to bring you home. I’m counting the days until I see you again. I will never stop looking for you.”
— Nicole Nishida (@lasdNicole) April 25, 2017
As NBC 4 Los Angeles reports, members of the missing boy’s family have been stunned by the arrest of Aramazd Andressian Sr. on suspicion of his son’s murder. According to his mother and other family members, they simply don’t believe that the 5-year-old is dead. In a Friday afternoon statement, Ana Estevez thanked community members for their support but maintained her belief that her son is still alive.
“I will continue to believe my son is alive until (he is) found.”
Some neighbors and family members also disbelieve that murder is involved in the disappearance of little Aramazd, arguing that he could have been sent out of the country to live with family members in Armenia.
A law enforcement press conference regarding the arrest of Aramazd Andressian Sr. on suspicion of murder charges is scheduled for Monday.
[Featured Image by Las Vegas Metro Police/Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office]