Thursday marks missing Buckeye boy's 11th birthday, authorities continue search for him

Posted at 3:07 PM, Mar 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-17 07:46:41-04

Thursday was Jesse Wilson's 11th birthday. 

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The young boy disappeared nearly eight months ago from his Buckeye home. A private investigator is now handling the case and in November he wouldn't confirm whether he believed Jesse was dead or alive when asked by ABC15.

Body camera footage released last August showed the missing boy and his mother, Crystal, talking to police officers in April after the boy was found in a neighbor's front yard. Jesse was reunited with his mother after she told officials he had climbed out of his bedroom window.


Officers explained that they did not call the Arizona Department of Child Services because they had no reason to believe the boy was in danger.

In 2011, Avondale police were called to the Wilson's then home after receiving reports of child abuse. Authorities found two boys strapped to their beds with shoulder harnesses. Crystal allegedly told police that the harnesses were used because the boys previously snuck outside to play without her knowledge.

However, officers checked the boys for injuries and determined that they were fed and showed no signs of abuse.

Despite authorities determining that the kids weren't in danger, neighbors were still concerned. One woman said she recalled when Jesse would knock on neighbors' doors asking for snack and drinks. Another man said he fed the kids on at least three occasions while they waited in the summer heat for their mother to return home.

The Buckeye Police Department said investigators continue to receive tips from the public regarding the boy's disappearance but refused to comment further regarding the situation. However, they did confirm on Monday that the investigation is ongoing.