Father of Missing 5-Year-Old SoCal Boy Arrested on Murder Charges

Father of Missing 5-Year-Old SoCal Boy Arrested on Murder Charges

As NBC 4 Los Angeles reports, members of the missing boy's family have been stunned by the arrest of Aramazd Andressian Sr. on suspicion of his son's murder.

Five-year-old Aramazd Andressian Jr. has been missing since late April, following a week-long visit with his non-custodial father, Aramazd Andressian Sr. Andressian's attorney said he was surprised by the arrest on a murder charge and said he's advised his client to waive extradition at Tuesday's hearing.

The early days in the search for the boy spanned to Lake Cachuma area in Santa Barbara County, where the man said he took his son.

Lt Mendoza told reporters, "We have not come up with any science that his son had been there with him".

There are now more than 200 law enforcement officers working the case and the search has expanded from Los Angeles county to Santa Barbara. Aramazd Jr. was reported missing by the boy's mother, Ana Estevez, after the father who was estranged did not return after the agreed upon one week custody exchange.

For her part, District Attorney Jackie Lacey said she wouldn't have authorized bringing the murder charge if she didn't think county prosecutors could convict Andressian Sr. of the murder charge.

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He told police he had taken prescription pills that belonged to someone else and did not know what had happened to his son.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department homicide investigators coordinated the arrest with the sheriff's Major Crimes Bureau Fugitive Taskforce, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department CAPE (Major Violator/Narcotics Crimes Bureau), Homicide Section and the Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Taskforce of the U.S. Marshals Service. April 21. The department said in a statement that 35-year-old Aramazd Andressian Sr.is being held there on $10 million bail.

Officials are expected to talk about the arrest at a news conference on Monday. The boy's father had reportedly recently moved into the home, where investigators "seized various items of evidence", according to a sheriff's statement released at the time. The vehicle was doused in gasoline and there was a rag sticking out of the gas tank.

A statement from Estevez was read at Monday's news conference. Asked about a possible motive for the killing, sheriff's Lt. Joe Mendoza said: "A tumultuous divorce that they were going through at the time". Investigators say that before his arrest in Las Vegas, he was socializing and behaving in a way not consistent of a grieving father.

"Any criminal case involving a child is awful", she said. "My heart is shattered and I will miss my son immensely each and every second of every day for the rest of my life". "I am counting the days until I see you honey, and I will never stop looking for you".

The case remains under investigation, and anyone with information is urged to call the sheriff's Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500, or leave an anonymous tip through Crime Stoppers by dialing 800-222-8477.

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