AURORA, Colo. — A 13-year-old boy with autism who had been missing from Aurora since Sunday was found Tuesday in Denver’s Civic Center Park, the Aurora Police Department said.
Police chief Nick Metz said an alert citizen recognized Juan Campos Rocha from the media coverage about the search and notified an off-duty police officer.
The officer approached the boy and confirmed his identity. The boy was then taken into protective custody until he could be reunited with this family.
“He is safe and looks like he’s well,” Metz said.
His mother said she and the rest of the family are relieved and “can finally relax.”
The boy was last seen taking out the trash on Sunday afternoon in the 1600 block of North Galena Street. His parents said he went outside to take out the trash and disappeared.
Metz said more than 60 officers were actively searching for the boy, along with volunteers from the department’s child missing and abduction response team.
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office brought in three search dogs and the Denver Fire Department helped search a pond.
Metz said the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the FBI and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children were involved in the search effort.
The CBI did not issue an Amber Alert because there were no signs of an abduction.
The Salvation Army also brought in a food truck to make sure the officers and search teams had everything they needed to keep going.
Police are still working to determine how the boy ended up in Civic Center Park and where he had been for the day and a half that he was missing.