Two Found Dead Near Car Connected to Central California Amber Alert

Bill Pan
By Bill Pan
September 23, 2019US News
Two Found Dead Near Car Connected to Central California Amber Alert
Steven Weir, left, abducted his son John Weir, 2, authorities said. (California Highway Patrol)

An Amber Alert issued out of central California over the weekend for a 2-year-old boy abducted by his father has been deactivated after two bodies were found near a car, the authorities said.

In a brief statement released on the afternoon of Sept. 23, Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office announced that a car associated with an earlier Amber Alert was found in the county’s remote area. Deputies said they found two people dead inside the car but did not confirm their identities.

An Amber Alert was issued by California Highway Patrol on behalf of Merced County on Sept. 21 after a father, 32-year-old Steven Weir, allegedly abducted his 2-year-old son John. The CHP said the pair was last seen on Sept. 20 at around 7 p.m and could be traveling in a red, 2005 Hyundai Elantra.

The CHP said Steven is considered “armed and dangerous.”

Deputy Daryl Allen, the Merced County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson, confirmed with Merced Sun-Star that the Amber Alert was canceled. He also said deputies were still working on “proper notification” of family members with ties to the incident.

In a telephone interview, John Weir’s mother, Sarah, told the Sun-Star she and her husband were in the midst of a divorce. She said Steven Weir disappeared with the child during his court-assigned visitation time, which spanned Wednesday evening to Saturday evening.

“Don’t injure anyone in this process,” Sarah pleaded to Steven during the interview. “There is no need for that. I just want him to please come and talk to me. My phone is always on.”

Sarah said recent developments in the divorce proceedings might have “agitated” the child’s father, reported the Sun-Star.

Parental Abductions

According to the Polly Klaas Foundation, approximately 200,000 children are kidnapped each year by a family member.

Child custody experts say that people kidnap their children to force a reconciliation or continued interaction with the other, left-behind parent; to spite or punish the other parent, or from fear of losing custody or visitation rights.

In rare cases, the kidnapping may occur to protect a child from a parent who is believed to be abusing the child.

Common warnings signs include the other parent threatening abduction, suspected abuse, or paranoid delusion.

The foundation says several steps can be taken to help prevent such situations, including respecting the other parent’s custody and visitation rights, maintaining a friendly relationship with the ex-spouse and his or her family, and keeping records of custody arrangements and rulings.

The Epoch Times reporter Zachery Stieber contributed to this report

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