The body of a child found in a frozen pond is believed to be the body of the missing 6-year-old boy who wandered away from his Colorado home on New Year’s Eve. The child’s body was discovered during the search for the missing boy in a pond not far from his home. The parents of 6-year-old David Puckett have been notified of the discovery because it is suspected that the body is that of their missing son. Reports indicate the family is “devastated” with this news. No official identification of the body has been released at this time.
Police do not suspect foul play, as this was not the first time this young boy had wandered away from his Colorado home. Despite foul play not being considered a factor in the boy’s disappearance, police are attempting to recreate how a child could have slipped into the pond. Police also contacted the registered sex offenders in the area during their search efforts, not leaving any stone unturned as they looked for this little boy.
The body of the child is still not officially identified. According to the Aurora Sentinel, the body was discovered in Aurora’s Olympic Park pond and it is believed to be that of the missing child, David Puckett, due to the close proximity to his home. Despite no official identification being made on the body, Aurora Police Chief Nick Metz, “inadvertently referred to the body as David’s before again resuming the stance that the body has not yet been identified,” reports the Aurora Sentinel. He also said that when the family was notified that a body of a child had been found, they were “devastated,” reports USA Today.
During a late morning press conference, police revealed that a child’s body was discovered beneath the ice of the pond, which is just across the street from the Puckett’s home. The divers went into the frigid water after a specially trained dog from Boulder County led the search crew to the pond and alerted them to something in the pond.
The outskirts and surrounding area of the pond were searched over the weekend. Searchers walked along the edge of the body of water looking for any signs that someone had fallen in. The search team didn’t see any signs of cracked ice or a disturbance indicating someone could have entered the icy water. Once the specially trained search dog paid attention to the area, the divers were called in.
Crime scene investigators were on the scene, along with the local police today as the divers searched the icy water. Members of other law enforcement agencies joined in on the search for the missing boy over the weekend, including the FBI. The FBI assigned 50 agents to this case, with one agent highlighting the search who was specially trained and very experienced in searching for missing children.
The urgency to find the child in the frigid temperatures put this search in high gear. The original bloodhounds brought into the area to search for the missing boy didn’t offer much help. It was when the dog that is specially trained was brought in from Boulder that a solid lead emerged. Police followed that dog’s cues and had their divers suit up to go in the pond. According to the reports, it was then police had asked photographers not to take photos of the pond.
Twitter users are bringing up their concerns on why it took police so long to search that pond, especially because it is so close to the boy’s home. The Aurora Police Department Twitter page is full of updates, which outlined the search progress. Still, some people are questioning the amount of time that had transpired before the pond was a vocal point of the search. An example of one of those tweets can be seen below.
@AuroraPD don't understand why it took so long to finally check the pond... he went missing Saturday. Should've been one of the first spots.— Janelle (@Sportsie_303) January 3, 2017
Besides searching the wooded areas and the area around the pond, members of law enforcement went house to house over the weekend asking people to check their homes, garages, cars, and any other place a child might crawl into and hide. In hopes of getting the public’s attention on this missing boy, an Amber Alert was issued on Monday afternoon. According to ABC News, a $10,000 reward was offered in the search for the missing boy.
David’s mother appeared on television over the weekend, she was distraught and asking for the public’s help in finding her son. He had wandered off wearing a light jacket on a cold night where temperatures dipped down into the teens. Police searched a 2- to 3-mile radius around the Puckett home when David was first reported missing.
USA Today reports that the missing boy left the house after an argument with one of his siblings. He was last seen about 4:30 p.m. on Saturday. When his family discovered he was missing they searched for David for about an hour before contacting police. More than 200 volunteers joined the search on Sunday and again on Monday. There were at least 150 law enforcement members also involved in the search and 27,000 reverse 911 calls went out to people within a few miles of the missing boy’s home.
Besides going from house to house, a helicopter equipped with an infrared system that would allow them to see at night also searched the area around the home of the boy. After it was discovered that David had seemingly vanished on Saturday night, authorities and the boy’s mother made an appeal for the public’s help. The urgency to find the boy also prompted Metro Denver Crime Stoppers to offer a $10,000 reward.
[Featured Image by David Zalubowski/AP Image]