A 5 year old Idaho boy who disappeared near his home in July has still not been found, and on Thursday – 115 days after the child left missing – investigators have sworn again that the desperate search will not end until he is found and brought home.
Michael Joseph Vaughan disappeared in the small community of Fruitland on the evening of July 27. The boy’s family has advocated for his safe return and has teamed up with authorities who have worked tirelessly to find him.
The Fruitland Police Department, along with the FBI and the Idaho State Police, were joined on Thursday by Michael’s mother, Brandi Neal, at a news conference to provide an update on the search.
“The search for Michael will not stop until he is found, and the search remains very active,” Fruitland Police Chief JD Huff said:.
sniff said that investigators, including the Idaho Mountain Search and Rescue using special canines, this week methodically searched nearly 1,000 acres near where Michael was last seen.
There is an increased chance that Michael was kidnapped due to the fact that multiple searches by all means available to investigators turned up no trace of the boy, Huff said.
Neal spoke about the pain her family is going through, tell reporters that “our family is devastated” without Michael and plead for his safe return.
“I’m here to ask you to keep Michael’s face, his name and his story in each of your hearts, eyes and thoughts,” Neal said. ‘This is my baby. This is my son. I need him at home.’
Meanwhile, more than 550 tips from around the world have come in about Michael, with most of the clues thoroughly reviewed and cleared, police said.
A reward fund totaling $50,100 is offered for Michael’s safe return. The money consists of community donations and “significant donations” from Michael’s family, police said.
Nicknamed “Monkey,” Vaughan was last seen wearing a light blue Minecraft shirt and black boxers and size 11 flip flops.