Body believed to be missing 6-year-old Maddox Ritch found in North Carolina

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Thursday, September 27, 2018
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Days after a boy went missing at a park, police are pleading for information about the moments before the boy's disappearance.

GASTONIA, North Carolina (WPVI) -- A body believed to be missing 6-year-old Maddox Ritch has been found in North Carolina.

Authorities say the body was discovered at approximately 1 p.m. Thursday off Marietta Street/Old Dallas Highway in Gastonia.

Ritch's parents have been notified of the discovery by law enforcement. Identification of the body will be done by the Medical Examiner's Office.

A news conference about the ongoing search for Maddox will be held at 4 p.m.

The boy, who has autism and is non-verbal, disappeared around 1:30 p.m. Saturday after going to Rankin Lake Park with his father and another adult.

The father told police that the boy ran off, and when they started running after him, they lost sight of him.

A 911 caller said the boy had disappeared about an hour before he called.

"We searched everywhere," he said.

He also told dispatchers that the parents were at the park looking for the boy.

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