The father of a 5-year-old boy from South Pasadena who mysteriously disappeared more than two months ago was arrested Friday on suspicion of murder, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said.
The arrest comes after an extensive search for the boy that reached from his hometown to Santa Barbara and down to Orange County. Officials have not said whether they found the boy’s remains or what evidence led to the arrest.
Aramazd Andressian Sr. was taken into custody about 1 p.m. in Las Vegas by sheriff’s homicide detectives. He is being held in lieu of $10 million and is expected to be returned to Los Angeles County after extradition proceedings next week.
His son, Aramazd Andressian Jr., was last seen April 20 with his father, who was initially detained on suspicion of child endangerment and abduction but released for lack of evidence. Andressian Sr. told investigators he took his son to the Cachuma Lake Recreation Area in Santa Barbara County the day after the boy’s last sighting, but there have been no confirmed sightings of the child there.
Andressian Sr., who detectives have said has given “inconsistent” and “misleading” statements, hired an attorney and refused to cooperate with investigators.
He was found unconscious in a South Pasadena park on April 22, the day he was supposed to return the boy to his ex-wife in San Marino.
The boy’s mother notified police and gave them a description of her estranged husband’s vehicle, a 2004 gray BMW, according to South Pasadena police Chief Art Miller. Officers discovered the car had been impounded that same morning in South Pasadena.
The mother told investigators she had handed off her son to his father about 8 a.m. April 15 in Baldwin Park, authorities said.
The couple are in the process of getting a divorce but share custody of their child.
Since the child’s disappearance, detectives have searched Andressian’s home, and the child’s mother and her family have repeatedly made public appeals to help find the boy. Police have also searched a South Pasadena park again and served search warrants at the boy’s grandmother’s home in Montebello.
The missing child is described as 55 pounds, white, with brown hair and brown eyes. Authorities have offered a $20,000 reward for information about his disappearance.
6:15 p.m.: This article was updated with additional background about the case.
This article was originally published at 5:15 p.m.