THIRTY-THREE YEARS TO THE DAY - THE MAN RESPONSIBLE FOR THE MURDER OF ETAN PATZ IS ARRESTED!
Pedro Hernandez, a 51 year old, unemployed New Jersey man, was arrested and charged with second degree murder in the case that brought the horrors of child abduction to national light. Hernandez, at the time, was a short-term employee of the bodega across the street from the bus stop and he lured the young boy into the basement with the promise of a soda. Etan Patz was strangled to death and his body disposed of in a trash bag. In November, 1985, FBI agents, went to Israel on a tip that the child may have been smuggled there. In reality, he was a block and a half away at the time of his passing. The parents are said to have taken the news as well as could possibly have been expected. The pain remains for the rest of the nation.
UPDATE: APRIL 24, 2012 - INVESTIGATION HAS BEEN HALTED. MYSTERY REMAINS UNSOLVED. CONCLUSIVE EVIDENCE HAS NOT BEEN FOUND ALTHOUGH POLICE WILL CONTINUE WITH FORENSIC TESTS.
ETAN PATZ - The First Child's Picture on the Side of a Milk Carton
It was widely believed that a man, currently serving time in jail for another child molestation case, was responsible, although this man has always denied having any knowledge of Etan Patz's whereabouts.
Breaking News: A new lead suggests there may finally be answers, after all these years, in a matter of just a few days.
I was 19 years old the year Etan Patz was abducted and, ever since, I've waited for investigators to crack this case. No parent should ever have to live without the closure that comes from knowing the truth. As bad as it may be, to never know the facts, must feel a thousand times worse.
Once I watched mom and dad being interviewed on T.V. They still lived in the apartment in lower Manhattan that was home to their little boy. I think they may have been asked why they had never moved from that address. Mom's response broke my heart, at the time, and stayed with me forevermore.
She said she had thought about moving many times but just couldn't bring herself to do it. She was afraid Etan would not be able to find his way home. By the time she spoke these words, her son would have been in his thirties, and certainly, if he were alive, reconnecting with his family would have been the simplest part.
Clearly, it wasn't a rational thought but what parent did not understand what she meant?
Let us all hope and pray that the next few days bring a much sought after conclusion to the unsolved mystery of Etan Patz. His parents have suffered long enough and need to receive the answers that will finally allow them to move on from this unimaginable horror.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Graduate REALTOR Institute
Jill Sackler, NYS Real Estate Broker Associate based on Long Island's South Shore
Specializing in Lifecycle Real Estate Transitions
©Jill Sackler 2010