Maddox Ritch’s father says search for missing son is ‘torture’


GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) – The father of a missing 6-year-old North Carolina boy said the search for his son has been “torture.” He said he just wants his little boy back home.

Ian Ritch joined Gastonia police and FBI agents for a news conference Wednesday, hours after appearing on ABC’s “Good Morning America” to talk about Maddox Ritch. The boy disappeared Saturday as he walked with his father at Rankin Lake Park.

Ian Ritch said his son ran a short distance from him before he broke into a sprint. The father said Maddox usually runs away, but would either slow down or stop. He said once he couldn’t see his son, he got scared.

With the help of friends who were walking with them, Ritch searched for his son but couldn’t find him. Park personnel also joined in the search but didn’t see Maddox, either.

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