Zion Police Fear The Worst In Missing Baby Case
Updated 08/22/13 – 4:15 p.m.
ZION, Ill. (CBS) – Police in north suburban Zion have asked local residents to help in their search for a 5-month-old boy who has been missing for nearly two days and fear the worst, given the time that has elapsed.
The search resumed Thursday morning for little Joshua Summeries, whose mother reported him kidnapped early Wednesday.
Thursday afternoon, police asked homeowners to search their own property to help find Joshua, specifically by checking their garbage cans.
“My hope is the baby’s alive – my fear is no. We’re now at the point of looking at the worst,” Zion Police Chief Wayne Brooks told reporters at a Thursday afternoon news conference.
Brooks said that grim assessment is based on the baby’s age and inability to survive alone for two days straight. He said he anticipates a resolution to the search by Thursday night or Friday morning.
Joshua’s mother originally told police a man took Joshua out a window, but has since changed her story a number of times. Police have been questioning her boyfriend, after she told investigators he went to quiet Joshua early Wednesday, after the baby been crying Tuesday night. She hasn’t seen the baby since.
Police said Thursday they were continuing to question witnesses and other “persons of interest” in the case.
Signs on the apartment building in the 2300 block of Galilee Avenue in Zion read “Warning: Security Cameras In Use,” but it’s unclear if police have obtained any video that could help them find Joshua.
Police posted a biohazard sticker on the front door of the mother’s apartment while they were searching for evidence.
More than 100 people took part in a search for the baby on Wednesday, and Zion Police Chief Wayne Brooks said it breaks his heart that he doesn’t know where Joshua is.
“We think it’s very suspicious. We’re taking it very serious, and we absolutely do believe that harm could have come to this child, and therefore we’re going to keep at it,” he said.
Officers were back at it Thursday morning. CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports police never really halted the search, they just scaled it back overnight.
Police have been searching all over the neighborhood, walking up and down alleys, looking in garbage cans, and searching in between homes.
Toronda Willis, a neighbor of Joshua’s mother and boyfriend, said the couple has fought non-stop since they moved in earlier this month.
“Once she was just saying that he was being very disrespectful, because she was pregnant with his child, and that’s all she kept yelling up and down the hallway,” Willis said.
Brooks said investigators believed the incident was “isolated” and “we do not believe any other Zion residents are in danger.”
Police have not issued an AMBER Alert for Joshua, because that missing child notification system requires confirmed information about an abduction.