Authorities: Missing N.C. boy was never in danger

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

SMITHFIELD (AP) ó A 3-year-old boy whose mother reported him missing from a Smithfield flea market was never actually missing, the townís police chief said Tuesday.
Siraj Munir Davenport is currently safe and with a family member, said chief Steve Gillikin. But he offered few details Tuesday about the boyís alleged disappearance, other than to call it a hoax. He refused to elaborate during a short news conference.
ěThe child was never in Smithfield,î Gillikin said. ěThe child was not abducted from the flea market. The child is safe. We know the whereabouts of the child.î
Authorities issued an Amber Alert Sunday afternoon and launched a massive search for Davenport that eventually included flights of a Highway Patrol helicopter. About 200 people attended a candlelight vigil for the child Monday night in Four Oaks.
But Gillikin said Tuesday that Davenport hadn’t been in the Smithfield area since the weekend, a fact he said authorities didnít learn ěliterally until midnightî Monday. Moments later, Smithfield police called off the search.
ěThis did not happen in Smithfield and it wasnít as it was originally reported,î he said. ěThe child was never in any danger whatsoever.î
The chief said investigators still are talking to the boy’s mother, Rosnah Hassan Thomason of Four Oaks. He declined to say whether anyone would face criminal charges, but said state and federal prosecutors planned to meet and discuss the case.
ěAt this particular point, itís out of our hands locally,î he said.