Authorities located a missing Platte City boy after a short search last week. According to officer Robert Newman of the Platte City Police Department, the 13-year-old reported missing late in the morning Thursday, Oct. 1 was found safe about three hours later. He voluntarily ran away that morning instead of reporting to class at Platte City Middle School, and no crime was committed.
The boy was reunited with his family that afternoon.
“It was good work between the Platte City Police Department and the Platte County Sheriff’s Office,” Platte City police chief Carl Mitchell said. “If we didn’t have Platte County, we might still be looking for him.”
The boy’s father reported him missing at about 11 a.m., and a collaborative search involving multiple agencies ensued.
A cell phone believed to be in the boy’s possession first pinged in the area of Bent Oak Court and Kentucky Avenue, not far from the Platte County R-3 School District campus. Eventually, the signal led authorities toward the area of the Hills of Oakmont subdivision.
Through interviews with school district officials and students and a tip from the public, the search intensified near Interstate 435 at the intersection of 136th Street and Nevada Avenue. While there, Newman and a deputy with the sheriff’s office spotted the boy and a brief foot chase ensued through a bean field and into a wooded area.
The boy was apprehended for his own safety, and according to Newman, was polite and cooperative.
While talking with the subject, he indicated he wanted to leave home for a while, and authorities located a grassy area nearby where the boy had made a small camp. He had extra clothes, snacks and his bike, which he was riding at the time he left for school at 7:30 a.m. The school later alerted his family that he had not shown up for class as expected.
The boy did not have his cell phone in his possession, and it later pinged north of the search site around Highway HH and Interstate 29. Authorities are unsure of why the signal led to different places. Unable to prove that the boy had been abducted, no Amber Alert could be issued for the teenager. The Platte City Police Department was in the process of drafting a public alert at the time the boy was located.