Man claiming to be missing Timmothy Pitzen has extensive criminal record
00:30, Apr 6, 2019
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Rini told authorities he had just fled from a nearby Red Roof Inn, where he was staying with two men who had held him captive for almost eight years, and identified himself as the missing child Timmothy Pitzen, who went missing in 2011 and would now be 14 years old.
Brian Michael Rini, 23, of Medina, was charged in US District Court for the Southern District of OH and ordered held without bond, prosecutor Ben Glassman said. About 24 hours later, DNA tests showed he is not Timmothy, the boy who vanished at age 6, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said.
OH prison records indicate Rini was released last month from Belmont Correctional Institution after serving a sentence for burglary and vandalism.
"False reports like this one can be painful to the families of missing children and also divert law enforcement resources in order to investigate these untruthful claims", Herb Stapleton, the acting special agent in charge of the FBI Cincinnati said.
A police report filed in OH after an alert went out said he was 14-year-old Pitzen and that he had just escaped two kidnappers who had held him hostage for seven years.
Even after Rini was advised of his rights and warned against making false statements, he continued to insist he was Pitzen and that he had escaped from a hotel where he had been forced to have sex with men against his will, the affidavit said.
The charge against Rini should send a message about the damage that making such false claims can do, said Benjamin Glassman, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio.
Kara Jacobs, the missing boy's aunt, called the news "devastating".
Timmothy vanished after his mother, Amy Fry-Pitzen, pulled him out of kindergarten early one day in the family's hometown of Aurora, Illinois, and took him on a two-day road trip to the zoo and a water park, but then killed herself at a hotel.
"He walked up to my auto and he went, 'Can you help me?' " a 911 caller told dispatchers, according to the affiliate.
"We know you are out there somewhere Tim and we will never stop looking for you, praying for you and loving you", she said. "I just want to get home".
Police checked Red Roof Inns in the Cincinnati and northern Kentucky areas but did not find any clues. Jonathon Rini said he later received a letter notifying him his license had been suspended, according to a police report from Norton, Ohio. He claimed he had been forced to have sex with men, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Rini told investigators that he wished he had a father like Timmothy's, because if he had gone missing, he said, his own father would just keep drinking, according to the affidavit. Now, less than a month later, authorities said Rini pretended to be Pitzen, a boy who had been missing since 2011. The 43-year-old mother left behind several cryptic notes about her son's whereabouts and unanswered questions that have haunted family members and authorities with each passing year.
She assured them Timmothy was safe.
Timmothy's family said they were heartbroken by the latest twist. Her biggest fear was that a judge would take her son away because of her mental health issues, according to relatives.
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