Boy with autism searched ‘how to hide from police’ before disappearing, NE cops say

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An 11-year-old boy with autism did “how to hide” searches online before he disappeared earlier this week, police said.

Ryan Larsen went missing Monday morning after he walked out of La Vista West Elementary School between classes, La Vista police said during a news conference Tuesday. La Vista is southwest of Omaha.

Before disappearing, Ryan searched “how to hide from the police,” “how to hide underground,” and “how to avoid being spotted,” Capt. Jeremy Kinsey, a spokesperson for the police department, said.

“He could very well be watching us right now, laughing at us,” Kinsey said during the news conference. “He’s the king of hide-and-seek right now.”

The police department announced Thursday evening it is working with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children as well as the FBI.

The Nebraska State Patrol issued an Endangered Missing Advisory Monday.

Ryan, described as 5’ 8” and 125 pounds, has autism and a history of running away, but he is high-functioning, police said. He is mostly non-verbal when it comes to strangers, Kinsey said.

Authorities are becoming more worried as the search enters the fourth day, since its unclear how Ryan is getting food or water, KETV reported.

“We have to look at, ‘Is this a criminal matter? Is he playing hide-and-seek? Is this a little boy who got in trouble and unfortunately has passed due to that?’ We’re looking at all angles,” John Francavilla, a spokesperson with the police department, told the TV station.

Anyone with information is asked to call 911 or the La Vista Police Department at 402-331-1852.

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