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Uncertainty grows amid search for Latino toddler who disappeared from home

The 3-year-old boy, Christopher Ramírez, was last seen playing with his dog outside on Wednesday afternoon, his family said.

Authorities in Texas are searching for a 3-year-old boy who went missing on Wednesday afternoon after his family returned home from running errands.

Christopher Ramírez disappeared while his mother, Araceli Núñez, and another family member were unloading groceries from their car at around 1:30 p.m. The boy was playing with his dog outside the home in Plantersville and chased it out of sight of the adults, the family said.

Christopher Ramirez.
Christopher Ramírez.Grimes County Sheriff's Office

While the dog came back to the house, the boy did not.

Núñez, other relatives and some neighbors searched for Christopher for about 20 minutes before alerting authorities.

More than 150 law enforcement officials from several agencies as well as search organizations and volunteers are helping search for Christopher, according to the Grimes County Sheriff’s Office.

While search operations are expected to continue throughout the day and night, efforts seemed to reach "a standstill" on Friday afternoon, Grimes County Sheriff Donald Sowell said.

"We're not getting any tips through 911 calls or through our dispatch center," Sowell said

"I'm desperate"

During a news conference Thursday, Núñez pleaded for help finding her son, adding she believes someone took her boy and is hiding him from her.

"Please return my child to me," Núñez said in Spanish. "It's been a long time, I don't know what to do anymore. ... I'm desperate.

While authorities are looking at all possibilities, Sowell said there are no signs of foul play or abduction at this point.

Sowell said the search party had inspected several water tanks and reservoirs in the area. They have also done ground searches with K-9 units and have surveyed the area with drones and helicopters. Officials are also reviewing surveillance footage from nearby homes.

Christopher was last seen wearing a bright green shirt with shorts and red Mickey Mouse shoes. He's about 3-feet tall and weighs about 45 pounds.

The boy speaks Spanish and may understand only Spanish, according to the Grimes County Sheriff’s Office.

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