A game of hide and seek goes terribly wrong. 9-year-old Josh Dinning of Gateshead was reported as missing.
A game of hide and seek goes terribly wrong. 9-year-old Josh Dinning of Gateshead was reported as missing to local police after his mother, Michelle, 49, went to wake him for school and realized his bed was empty. She, along with the boy’s siblings, 20-year-old Scott, 16-year-old Ryan, and 10-year-old Owen, searched the entire house, calling for the boy, without luck. He appeared to have vanished.
Dozens of officers immediately responded to the mother’s frantic call, along with a helicopter, dogs and boats to seek out the boy. Michelle told the police she had tucked the boy into bed the night before and that was the last time she had seen him. A search of the home was conducted, but officials also failed to find Josh, and the school indicated no one had seen him there that day. A warehouse operator involved in the case confirmed the police had been into Josh’s room to check for him without luck. So, a large scale search ensued, involving the local community. Responding residents scoured the surrounding area, searching for the missing boy. The local library even printed pictures of Josh which were handed out to members of the public.
After all of their efforts to seek out the child, it turns out Josh wasn’t too far from where his mother had last seen him. He was found about four hours into the search simply hiding in a cupboard under his bed. Inside, he was completely unnoticeable to those searching and it was hard for him to hear his name being called.
“Josh was found by one of our officers who had been searching the address. Josh was returned to his mother who was clearly relieved that he was found safe and well,” the police department confirmed. ‘He has now been reunited with his family and we will be reviewing why he was missed in our initial searches.”
Older brother Scott, told reporters: ‘So everyone had been out looking for him. The police also checked the bedroom but no-one knew he was there. We were all worried sick. I have been to hell and back.” He also discussed the moment they realized Josh was hiding in his room, ‘I was just sitting outside the house when all of a sudden I heard someone saying, ‘he is here’. Apparently Josh had got into the cabinet under the bed. It’s one of those beds that has sliding doors and somehow he has got himself inside and shut the doors.” He added, ‘We are all just so relieved. We were all thinking the absolute worst. You see stories about kids going missing all of the time.” Michelle is especially happy that her worst fears were not realized.
Josh’s dad passed four years ago and the family said the child is still recovering from the loss. His behavior could have been related to that, according to Scott. “I think he had been upset about that,’ his brother said, adding of the whole ordeal, “Josh was a little shaken up by what happened, but other than that he was fine.”