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Did a bear help save boy missing for nearly 3 days? Family says 3-year-old Casey Hathaway told them he was protected by a bear

A 3-year-old North Carolina boy, Casey Hathaway, who disappeared for nearly three days before authorities found him last night, is said to be “doing good” as he recovers in the hospital.

“He’s good! He’s up and talking. He’s already asked to watch Netflix,” Casey’s mom, Brittany, said during a Thursday night press conference. “So he’s good, he is good.”

According to ABC 11, family members said the boy indicated a bear became his new friend and helped him get through the days and nights while missing. Although it’s unclear whether it’s actually true or his imagination, loved ones are just relieved and happy the boy is alive and safe.

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Casey is healthy, smiling, and talking. He said he hung out with a bear for two days God sent him a friend to keep him safe. God is good God. Miracles do happen.

Posted by Breanna Hathaway on Thursday, January 24, 2019

 

As CrimeOnline previously reported, authorities found Casey tangled up in briars and thorn patches, near Toler and Aurora Roads, close to his grandmother’s Craven County home, not far from where he disappeared from on Tuesday afternoon while outside playing. He’s been transported to the Carolina East Medical Center in New Bern for a medical evaluation.

Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes said during Thursday night’s press conference that authorities had to go through some water to get to the boy, who was found in wet clothes with his jacket on, still zipped up, after a nearby neighbor heard him crying out. The sheriff said Casey was asking for his mother when found.

A rainbow just appeared over the search area for missing three-year-old Casey Hathaway. A sign of good things to come?

Posted by Nate Belt WCTI on Wednesday, January 23, 2019

 

Hughes also touched on the possibility that someone may have abducted the boy, then had a change of heart and dropped him off in an area where searchers would find him. The sheriff said he had no evidence that Casey was  taken by anyone.

“Absolutely not,” Hughes said. “At no time did we see any indications of an abduction and, you know, to take that a little further, that’s why an AMBER Alert was not put out. There were no signs of abduction. Believe me, had there been the slightest, we would have done that.”

FBI gives an update after missing Craven County 3-year-old is found alive. Full story: https://abc11.com/5104102/

Posted by ABC11 WTVD on Thursday, January 24, 2019

 

Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.

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[Feature Photo: Casey Hathaway/Handout]