Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou

Police divers call off search for missing 10-year-old boy, family fears he’s been abducted

Canadian police have called off their search for a missing 10-year-old boy, as reported by Toronto Star.

Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou has been missing since March 12, when he disappeared after traveling to a friend’s house. Neighbors have confirmed to authorities that Kouakou did arrive at his friend’s house, in the Ahuntsic-Cartierville borough of Montreal, but the friend was not home, forcing the boy to turn away, as previously reported by CrimeOnline. 

Authorities have intimated that they may have interviewed an unidentified witness who claimed to have seen the boy after leaving his friend’s house, but information remains scant.

Montreal police had been frantically looking for the 10-year-old, sending investigators door-to-door in his neighborhood and assigning divers to trawl a nearby river. These divers were operating until Tuesday morning, when authorities called off the aquatic leg of their search. Investigators have not announced an intention to stop other methods of search, which have included canvassing the area with helicopters, a canine unit and horses.

The boy’s father, Frederic Kouakou, has stated that he believes his son to have been abducted and has pleaded with police to reinstate an Amber Alert that was issued on his behalf, as reported by CTV.

He also does not believe that his son fell into the river and drowned, which had been a prevailing theory.

A reward for information leading to the 10-year-old being found has climbed to $100,000 after a Montreal-area businessman doubled the amount from $50,000. As of this writing, police say they have received around 600 tips.

[Featured Image: Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou/Handout]