, Salem, MA

May 10, 2013

Marblehead police search for, find autistic boy

By Neil H. Dempsey
Staff Writer

---- — MARBLEHEAD — After an extensive search on Wednesday afternoon, police located a 6-year-old autistic boy who went missing from a Lime Street residence.

The incident began when a caretaker called police at 2:16 p.m. to report that the boy had gone missing after she dropped him off. The boy — described as having reddish hair and a thin build — “won’t necessarily respond to his name,” police wrote in the incident log.

While police and firefighters searched the area, the boy’s mother returned home and the woman who called the incident in continued looking in the area, as well.

Police checked all over, including by Redd’s Pond, Coffin School, the cemetery on Creesy Street and the boatyard on Lincoln Avenue.

“Mother did see him climbing on a neighbor’s fence before losing sight of him,” an officer wrote, adding that “the child is a climber, so look up on fences, trees, decks.”

A be-on-the-lookout alert was issued and state police were contacted for their K-9 unit.

The DPW also assisted in the search.

Shortly after officers contacted Salem police to request their K-9 unit, too, a woman called police to report that she had found the boy after she noticed a sliding door was open at her neighbor’s house at 7 Lime St.

“He was inside eating cookies,” police wrote.