Footage Shows Autistic Florida Boy Was Rescued Once Before Pushed Again Into Canal

Lorenz Duchamps
By Lorenz Duchamps
May 24, 2020US News
Footage Shows Autistic Florida Boy Was Rescued Once Before Pushed Again Into Canal
(L - R) 9-year-old Florida boy Alejandro Ripley and his mother 45-year-old Patricia Ripley, who is charged in Alejandro death. (Miami-Dade Police Department)

The mother of a nine-year-old Florida boy with special needs who she claimed was abducted in Miami by two men and was later found dead by police is now facing a murder charge related to his death, according to multiple reports.

Detective Chris Thomas said at a news conference late on Friday after Alejandro Ripley’s body was found that the department is “not ruling out foul play.”

After hours of questioning, 45-year-old Patricia Ripley was charged with first-degree murder in the death of her son, Local10 reported.

After contradicting witness statements and video footage that surfaced, Ripley later admitted to Alejandro’s death.

The footage shows Ripley pushing her severely autistic son into a canal around 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Nearby residents heard screaming, found Alejandro in the canal, and rescued him, Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said.

Ripley then later took Alejandro to a different canal an hour later where the boy drowned, the Miami-Dade County Police said in an affidavit.

“She (Ripley) stated he’s going to be in a better place,” according to the affidavit.

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Florida 9-year-old boy Alejandro Ripley, who was kidnapped in The Hammocks of Miami, Florida. (Miami-Dade Police Department)

Authorities questioned Ripley hours after Alejandro was found dead in a lake Friday morning. She initially told authorities a dramatic story that her son had been abducted by two men who blocked her car and demanded drugs from her Thursday night.

Ripley told police that after she told the men she didn’t have any illegal substances, they snatched her cellphone and pulled her son out of the vehicle.

Ripley is now held without bond after she admitted to detectives she was behind the death of her son. She is currently at Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center and is facing charges of first-degree murder and attempted premeditated murder, according to Local10.

“Our position is that Mrs. Ripley is a good woman and mother who always looked after the best interest of her son Alejandro,” Ripley’s defense attorney Nelson Rodriguez Varela said in a statement to CNN.

“This is not the time to rush to judgment in this matter. At this very preliminary stage, Mrs. Ripley is presumed innocent as any person charged with a crime would be.”

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Patricia Ripley, 45, is facing a murder charge related to the death of her son, 9-year-old Alejandro Ripley. (Miami-Dade Police Department)

‘Sweet and Happy Boy’

The boy’s body was found floating in a lake at the Miccosukee Golf and Country Club in the southwest area of Miami-Dade, about 4 miles from the place the boy was reportedly abducted.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement initiated a statewide Amber Alert for the child’s abduction, which sparked a massive search Thursday night.

Antoinette Uribe, the boy’s therapist at My Kid Therapy Center, said, “He [Alejandro] was the world to his parents.”

Uribe told Local10 Alejandro was a “sweet and happy boy” and had been spending more time at home because of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic.

A large memorial was held Friday afternoon after the news broke out on Alejandro’s death at the Friendship Circle of Miami, a nonprofit organization that offers services for children with special needs.

Ripley is married and has one other child.

CNN Wire contributed to this report.

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