'Teen' claiming to be missing six-year-old boy revealed by DNA to be an imposter
DNA evidence has proven that the person who came forward as a kidnapping victim is in fact not Timmothy Pitzen, who went missing back in 2011.
On Wednesday, an individual was found roaming the streets in Kentucky who claimed to be the young kidnapping victim Pitzen, who went missing as a six-year-old eight years prior in Aurora, Illinois. However FBI have confirmed that DNA proves the person found was 23-year-old Brian Michael Rini.
Speaking to CNN, Kentucky resident Sharon Hall said she noticed a "fidgety" boy in her home of Newport, adding that a neighbour's daughter placed the 911 call. According to WCPO, the caller said that the man in front of her had been kidnapped, and was just trying to get home.
"He walked up to my car and he went, 'Can you help me?' I just want to get home. Please help me.' I asked him what's going on, and he tells me he's been kidnapped and he's been traded through all these people and he just wanted to go home."
The FBI had quickly refuted the idea that this was the missing boy, however, confirming that DNA evidence proved this was not missing child Timmothy Pitzen, who would now be 14 years old.
"FBILouisville, @FBICincinnati, @AuroraPoliceIL, Newport PD, @CincyPD, and HCSO have been conducting a missing person investigation. DNA results have been returned indicating the person in question is not Timmothy Pitzen," confirmed FBI Louisville in a tweet.
However, Rini was recognised almost immediately by Ed Kinney, a police chief from Medina in Ohio, where the 23-year-old is actually from.
Kinney said that Rini "has an extensive criminal history with Medina police and documented mental issues," and that his police force have interacted with him as many as 60 times over the years.
A "known schemer", Kinney said that Rini has been charged with a laundry list of crimes, including passing bad checks, making false alarms, theft, falsification, and according to WLWT5, most recently burglary and vandalism.
Timmothy’s aunt Kara Jacobs and maternal grandmother Alana Anderson have both spoken out about the false claim made by Rini, with Jacobs saying to CNN that the experience was an extremely difficult one. "It's devastating. It's like reliving that day all over again," she said, adding that "Timmothy's father is devastated once again".
Back in 2011, Timmothy and his mother Amy Fry-Pitzen were last seen on a road trip which took stops at a zoo and a water park. But on May 13, 2011, Amy was found dead (later confirmed to be a suicide), leaving a note that Timmothy was with people who love him. "You'll never find him," the note said.
In a follow-up tweet, FBI Louisville reiterated their desire to find Pitzen, and reunite him with his family again.
"A local investigation continues into this person’s true identity. To be clear, law enforcement has not and will not forget Timmothy, and we hope to one day reunite him with his family," said the FBI.
"Unfortunately, that day will not be today," they added.