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‘Distinct possibility that he has been sold’: Family of long-missing 6-year-old disabled boy traveled to India just before AMBER Alert was issued

Noel Rodriguez-Alvarez

Noel Rodriguez-Alvarez, a missing 6-year-old boy from North Texas, appears in a photo being circulated by law enforcement. (Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office)

The family of a 6-year-old boy who has been missing since last November boarded an international flight bound for India right before an Amber Alert was issued, police in North Texas claim.

On March 20, child protective services agents relayed information that Noel Rodriguez-Alvarez had not been seen in months, according to Everman Police Chief Craig Spencer. Once officers made contact with the boy’s mother, Cindy Rodriguez-Singh, she said her son had been living with his biological father in Mexico since November. At the time, the mother’s word and provision of the father’s contact information was enough to preclude further investigation, police said.

Everman is a small town some 11 miles due south of Fort Worth and is part of the broader Metroplex region.

Three days later, child protective agents followed up with the EPD and said they received additional information from other family members who indicated the boy’s whereabouts were unknown and “expressed significant concern for his welfare,” the police chief said during a Sunday press conference. So, Spencer said, his officers picked up the case again, eventually locating Rodriguez-Alvarez’s biological father, who said the boy was not, in fact, living with him in Mexico. Rather, the father said, he had been deported before he ever met his son.

Police were also told that Rodriguez-Singh’s other six children had recently racked up a number of absences at school and that school officials said she had earlier called about unenrolling them.

“It appeared to the [child protective services] investigator that the mother was intentionally evading authorities,” Spencer said.

The EPD continued their investigation into the missing boy, the police chief said, focusing on his mother – but were unable to contact her.

“There have been prior [child protective services] investigations and actions against the mother,” Spencer said. “Additionally, the mother has an extensive criminal history involving alcohol-related offenses.”

After conferring with numerous local, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies, an AMBER Alert was issued for the boy.

The Amber Alert was issued early Saturday morning and replaced with an Endangered Missing Persons alert around 9 p.m. that day.

On Thursday, March 23, the family was gone, police said.

“Six-year-old Noel Rodriguez-Alvarez is still missing,” Spencer said on Sunday. “Noel suffers from multiple disabilities, including, severe development disorder, social disorder, physical disabilities, chronic lung disease – which requires treatment and oxygen at times.”

As of this writing, the boy is still missing.

“I want to dispel a rumor,” the police chief said during a Monday press conference. “Noel has not been found. He is still missing.”

Also on Saturday, police said, authorities discovered the family’s truck parked at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. During a search of the truck, police recovered a device from the truck that contained a digital visa for one of Rodriguez-Alvarez’s siblings.

“That visa indicated that it was obtained on March 21, one day after the welfare check,” the police chief said on Monday.

“We believe that the family has traveled back to India,” Spencer said, noting the flight had a layover in Turkey, with a final destination of India and that police are working to verify passenger lists.

Cadaver dogs did not alert on the property where the family lived, Spencer said, but were brought over just to be sure. Police do not have any information or evidence to believe the boy is dead.

“There is a distinct possibility that he has been sold,” Spencer said, noting that this was another rumor that has been widely shared online.

No charges have been filed against anyone in the case so far.

The police chief repeatedly said that his agency has “no physical evidence” in the case and that authorities have searched the family’s residence and collected belongings in an effort to ferret out any clues. He said additional searches of the large, converted shed where all nine members of the family lived were likely. In response to a question on Monday, Spencer was reticent to use the term “person of interest” related to anyone due to the lack of criminal charges.

“We are coming up empty-handed on every traditional aspect,” Spencer said – adding that information from the public was crucial at this point. “It’s going to be that one small tip that snowballs.”

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