JENISON, Mich. (WOOD) - An 11-year-old boy accused of attempting to abduct a 6-year-old boy in Jension got off to a rough start in his life through no fault of his own, court records show.
The 11-year-old allegedly took the younger boy from the victim's front yard March 13. The boy's stepmother pursued the two and said she found the older boy dragging the 6-year-old across busy Chicago Drive.
Court records show the young suspect was just 5 years old in 2007 when police raided the Grand Rapids home where he lived with his mother and stepfather. Police not only found marijuana and cocaine residue, but also "deplorable" conditions -- trash, dirty dishes, uncovered food and an odor of garbage throughout the home.
Children's Protective Services immediately took the 5-year-old, his twin brother and two sisters away from their mom and stepdad.
He went to live with his father before his mom made changes in her life and got the kids back. It's not yet clear why he was living with his dad in Jenison at the time of the attempted abduction.
But it was in Jenison that he became friends with the 6-year-old boy.
"They were buddies from school," said the victim's stepmother.
Police have said the boys weren't friends, but the stepmother said they were friends. She said that despite their age difference, the boys were in the same class for students with behavior problems. She said they played sometimes together in the yard, which is where they were last Wednesday when her stepson disappeared after school.
"I walked away and looked back out there. They were gone," she recalled.
It's still not clear why the 11-year-old would want to abduct the 6-year-old.
The victim's stepmom pulled him away from the 11-year-old on Chicago Drive.
A neighbor said he saw the 11-year-old boy taunting the victim's stepmom before Ottawa County sheriff's deputies got there.
"He kept asking her if she was going to call the police, and he was kind of laughing about it, and he came over and was saying bye to me and saying he was going to jail, and he was just kind of making a big joke about the whole thing. It seemed like he was happy to go," said Josh Brown.
The victim's stepmother said she doesn't want the 11-year-old locked up.
"There's really not any place they can lock him up, except for juvie, but I think he needs help," she said.
The suspect's mother, who lives in Grand Rapids, declined to speak with 24 Hour News 8 Monday. His paternal grandfather said police are blowing the case out of proportion.
While police say they've had contact with the suspect, he has no criminal record in Ottawa or Kent counties.
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