ID MICHAEL VAUGHAN: Missing from Fruitland, ID - 27 July 2021 - Age 5

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Search continues for missing and endangered 5-year-old in Fruitland, Idaho​

Michael Vaughn was last seen near SW 9th Street and S. Arizona Ave. in Fruitland on Tuesday evening. Crews and neighbors were out all day looking for the boy.

The search for a missing 5-year-old-year-old boy intensified Wednesday as it entered its second day.

Michael Vaughn was last seen near SW 9th Street and S. Arizona Avenue in Fruitland around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

The Fruitland Police Department said Michael is considered missing and endangered.

Michael is about three feet, seven-inches tall and weighs 50 pounds. He has blonde hair and blue eyes. He answers to the nickname "Monkey."

Michael was wearing a light blue shirt with a Minecraft picture on it, dark blue boxer briefs and sandals.

Idaho Mountain Rescue brought in highly-trained and rescue personnel to assist in the search.

Crews from multiple agencies searched the area near Michael's home by ground and air by drone and helicopter. They also went door to door, talking with neighbors.

Right next to the boy's home is a field where crews spent much of the day searching for him.

Neighbors say they learned about his disappearance about an hour after he was reported missing. They say Michael is a happy kid who lives with his parents and grandfather.

Cynthia Walker was walking her dog as the search was happening.

"At five years old, I don't know that he would wander too far without one us seeing him by now," she said. "There are volunteers, many, many volunteers out searching, scanning the fields and we just want to have Michael back, we just want him home safe."

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MEDIA - MICHAEL VAUGHN: Missing from Fruitland, ID since 27 July 2021 - Age 5
 

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It’s hard to know what was in a kids mind. I remember once I was walking home from school, and this was First grade and we used to walk quite a ways back then. On the way home, I had to go to the bathroom so bad! I knocked on a strangers door and used their bathroom. True story. You just never know what a kid’s going to do.

The neighbor down the street where I went told my mom and my mom had a talk with me. But what else was I gonna do?
 
In Michael's case, I agree, these seem like the only likely conclusions or a variation on one of those two, like someone drew him out or to their house somehow,

With Summer, I agree an abduction is possible but I feel it unlikely. There were just so many people home if we have the true story... Home and awake no less. It would be a very bold move and in such a remote location as you say.
Hey, I just realized another sillmilarity with these two cases: neither has an eye-witness, and both have dog-scent info.
Anyway, in Summer’s case, such info “follows” her down to Ben Hill Rd and so based on that, I’m not sure how bold the abduction actually was compared to an abduction from a residential neighborhood.
 
By the way, as I understand it, the scent-dog indicated Michael’s path from his home and in a direction opposite of his door-knocking...
Is that correct?
 
Both Michael and Summer were thought to be inside by caregivers when they weren’t.
Both had a dog scent traced to a major road then stop (reported by parents).
Both 5 year old blondes.
(I do not think these cases are connected, just noting similarities.)

Michael was seen by neighbors just prior to disappearing. Summer was not, probably due to the more remote location.
An AMBER Alert was issued for Summer. None for Michael.
Summers case was made an absolute spectacle of by the media, LE, and family. LE in Michael’s case are hard-pressed to even confirm a timeline and his case has received very little attention outside the Fruitland area.
 
By the way, as I understand it, the scent-dog indicated Michael’s path from his home and in a direction opposite of his door-knocking...
Is that correct?
I’d have to check on that.
IIRC, he was spotted by at least two neighbors. The first sent him back home, but then he was seen going another direction by someone else.
This was all discussed on Facebook and not by LE so it may be hard to find but I’ll look later.
 
It’s hard to know what was in a kids mind. I remember once I was walking home from school, and this was First grade and we used to walk quite a ways back then. On the way home, I had to go to the bathroom so bad! I knocked on a strangers door and used their bathroom. True story. You just never know what a kid’s going to do.

The neighbor down the street where I went told my mom and my mom had a talk with me. But what else was I gonna do?
That's both funny and scary. Of course back in the day, it wasn't so scary as nowadays, at least in many areas/neighborhoods. It is true though, maybe Michael just went looking for a neighbor kid to play with or something.
 
Hey, I just realized another sillmilarity with these two cases: neither has an eye-witness, and both have dog-scent info.
Anyway, in Summer’s case, such info “follows” her down to Ben Hill Rd and so based on that, I’m not sure how bold the abduction actually was compared to an abduction from a residential neighborhood.
Did LE ever confirm the dog info? I know Don said this was the case. I'm not sure how much store I put in it and how long does a scent last as well?

In Michael's case, I think the scent was confirmed by LE wasn't it? But for some reason I feel his knocking on doors is vague or all is not confirmed there or do I have it wrong? Was it one or two neighbors?
 
Both Michael and Summer were thought to be inside by caregivers when they weren’t.
Both had a dog scent traced to a major road then stop (reported by parents).
Both 5 year old blondes.
(I do not think these cases are connected, just noting similarities.)

Michael was seen by neighbors just prior to disappearing. Summer was not, probably due to the more remote location.
An AMBER Alert was issued for Summer. None for Michael.
Summers case was made an absolute spectacle of by the media, LE, and family. LE in Michael’s case are hard-pressed to even confirm a timeline and his case has received very little attention outside the Fruitland area.
This brings a thought to mind of how we are a bit more relaxed with five year olds than a two or three year old. One thinks they can leave them in the living room or basement rec room playing for a few minutes while they cook, talk on the phone, etc. While one wouldn't want them walking down a rural road or city street, most parents are a bit more relaxed in the home thinking they are right in the next room, etc., etc. I guess both cases go to show a person a five year old is maybe more apt to head out and head somewhere maybe...
 
I’d have to check on that.
IIRC, he was spotted by at least two neighbors. The first sent him back home, but then he was seen going another direction by someone else.
This was all discussed on Facebook and not by LE so it may be hard to find but I’ll look later.
I'd have to look back but for some reason in Michael's case I feel like some of the info is from people or neighbors, etc. and not confirmed by LE or am I wrong?
 
Did LE ever confirm the dog info? I know Don said this was the case. I'm not sure how much store I put in it and how long does a scent last as well?

In Michael's case, I think the scent was confirmed by LE wasn't it? But for some reason I feel his knocking on doors is vague or all is not confirmed there or do I have it wrong? Was it one or two neighbors?
I beg everyone’s pardon, info regarding indications from the scent dog is that Michael’s trail headed east down his street where it abruptly ended. (That’s info reported in an article titled, ‘Michael Vaughan’s mother pleads- don’t let his case go cold’).
Info regarding door-knocking- indicated to me by his mother’s head gestures- is that
he first went to the house to their immediate west, next to the house immediately east, and then lastly, to one other house farther east.
(Reported in article, ‘Mother of Missing Idaho boy, 5, desperate for his return’).
 
It sounds like he was looking for someone. One would think if you were going to houses for help, you would go from one to the next but if you were looking for a friend or maybe sibling, you would check the houses you think they might be at which might be in different direcitons. Not necessarily though I guess but just a thought.

It would help to know if he was allowed sometimes (with parents' knowledge of course) to walk to these homes and if friends lived there, etc. If he was often seen doing this, then I can see a perp awaiting an opportunity for the next time he did so. If it was unusual for him to be outside walking to someone's home, then I would think there had to be something that triggered it or caused him to do this and I would wonder more about someone in the neighborhood or at least known to him.

Is his a fully biological family? The reason I ask is if there might be someone who does not have custody or lost custody out there who took him although if that was a possibility I would think we would have heard it by now.

Prayers for him, Summer and all others although with Michael and Summer it has been long enough that the odds they are alive are slim at best. Sadly.
 
I beg everyone’s pardon, info regarding indications from the scent dog is that Michael’s trail headed east down his street where it abruptly ended. (That’s info reported in an article titled, ‘Michael Vaughan’s mother pleads- don’t let his case go cold’).
Info regarding door-knocking- indicated to me by his mother’s head gestures- is that
he first went to the house to their immediate west, next to the house immediately east, and then lastly, to one other house farther east.
(Reported in article, ‘Mother of Missing Idaho boy, 5, desperate for his return’).
You are correct. (Though I didn't see specific locations of neighbors houses mentioned, just that there were several.)

"K-9 dogs searched the area as well, according to Neal, where they were able to track Michael’s scent it led to the end of their street, away from the farm field to the right of the house, and stopped abruptly.

and

He went to a neighbor’s house. And another neighbor’s house, and another neighbor’s house,” Neal said.

That’s typical, she says, for a summer night here. But with Neal at work and her husband inside checking on the toddler and ordering dinner, neither parent knew Michael had left.

These screenshots are from the babysitter very early on on Facebook.

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I'd have to look back but for some reason in Michael's case I feel like some of the info is from people or neighbors, etc. and not confirmed by LE or am I wrong?
Literally nothing in this case has been confirmed or denied by LE except for "last seen on SW 9th St. between 6:30 - 7:15 pm".
Though the "unconfirmed" timeline is more specifically 6:45-7:00. Likely extended 15 mins on either end to be certain.


I posted below 10 days into the search. Nothing has changed since that time. No additional efforts outside the local area. No "move" made on anyone.
I did find it interesting that, when asked during the last press conference about what they are doing outside of Fruitland, it was pretty much just "we've got some posters out there". This search and investigation has stayed VERY close to home. I keep hoping they've got their eyes on someone and are just waiting to make a move.
 
You are correct. (Though I didn't see specific locations of neighbors houses mentioned, just that there were several.)

"K-9 dogs searched the area as well, according to Neal, where they were able to track Michael’s scent it led to the end of their street, away from the farm field to the right of the house, and stopped abruptly.

and

He went to a neighbor’s house. And another neighbor’s house, and another neighbor’s house,” Neal said.

That’s typical, she says, for a summer night here. But with Neal at work and her husband inside checking on the toddler and ordering dinner, neither parent knew Michael had left.

These screenshots are from the babysitter very early on on Facebook.

1628617259347.png
1628617373454.png





Literally nothing in this case has been confirmed or denied by LE except for "last seen on SW 9th St. between 6:30 - 7:15 pm".
Though the "unconfirmed" timeline is more specifically 6:45-7:00. Likely extended 15 mins on either end to be certain.


I posted below 10 days into the search. Nothing has changed since that time. No additional efforts outside the local area. No "move" made on anyone.
There’s video accompanying the article, ‘Mother....desperate...’ at the link “news nation now.com” (Sorry, I don’t know how to embed links using my phone.)
In the video, it’s clear that the mother refers to the first house as the one on the northwest corner of Arizona and 9th and the other two on the north side of 9th.
I think the mother may have gone on to mention a fourth sighting, but for some reason- frustrating no matter what- she’s cut-off!
 
You are correct. (Though I didn't see specific locations of neighbors houses mentioned, just that there were several.)

"K-9 dogs searched the area as well, according to Neal, where they were able to track Michael’s scent it led to the end of their street, away from the farm field to the right of the house, and stopped abruptly.

and

He went to a neighbor’s house. And another neighbor’s house, and another neighbor’s house,” Neal said.

That’s typical, she says, for a summer night here. But with Neal at work and her husband inside checking on the toddler and ordering dinner, neither parent knew Michael had left.

These screenshots are from the babysitter very early on on Facebook.

1628617259347.png
1628617373454.png





Literally nothing in this case has been confirmed or denied by LE except for "last seen on SW 9th St. between 6:30 - 7:15 pm".
Though the "unconfirmed" timeline is more specifically 6:45-7:00. Likely extended 15 mins on either end to be certain.


I posted below 10 days into the search. Nothing has changed since that time. No additional efforts outside the local area. No "move" made on anyone.
I didn't think too much had been confirmed from what I recalled, not by LE anyhow and what you said confirms that. Everything comes from neighbors apparently and mom, etc. Not unusual for LE to not confirm but it has been five months, one would think they could maybe confirm some more basic facts.

So he went looking for a friend even though pizza/supper would be coming. I wonder if the pizza delivery was when dad realized he was not there perhaps or was it sooner. Delivery here is usually pretty quick. I assume they checked with the pizza place or Uber, Door Dash or whoever the driver worked for.
 
Update from today.

Police provide update on boy missing since July​

Investigators say they have searched a remote forested area over 20 miles from where a 5-year-old boy disappeared nearly five months ago.

The latest update for Michael Joseph Vaughan was announced Wednesday from the Fruitland Police Department who says a reward for the boy’s safe return sits at $52,206. Vaughan vanished on July 27 from his Fruitland neighborhood.

Since their investigation began, local authorities, Idaho State Police and the FBI have expanded into ground searches of a remote forested piece of land north of Weiser. The area is at least 20 miles from Michael’s home and around a 25 to 30 minute drive.

Authorities have not said what led them to this area but announced they have received 738 tips in connection to the case.

“Investigators continue to work every lead that comes in,” police say. “We continue to comb through the data collected since July 27 and it is a monumental task, but we remain committed and steadfast in our efforts. ”

In November the Associated Press reported Micheal was likely abducted, according to police. Exhaustive ground searches in a 2 mile radius near the family’s home since July have led to no signs of the missing boy.
 
Update from today.

Police provide update on boy missing since July​

Investigators say they have searched a remote forested area over 20 miles from where a 5-year-old boy disappeared nearly five months ago.

The latest update for Michael Joseph Vaughan was announced Wednesday from the Fruitland Police Department who says a reward for the boy’s safe return sits at $52,206. Vaughan vanished on July 27 from his Fruitland neighborhood.

Since their investigation began, local authorities, Idaho State Police and the FBI have expanded into ground searches of a remote forested piece of land north of Weiser. The area is at least 20 miles from Michael’s home and around a 25 to 30 minute drive.

Authorities have not said what led them to this area but announced they have received 738 tips in connection to the case.

“Investigators continue to work every lead that comes in,” police say. “We continue to comb through the data collected since July 27 and it is a monumental task, but we remain committed and steadfast in our efforts. ”

In November the Associated Press reported Micheal was likely abducted, according to police. Exhaustive ground searches in a 2 mile radius near the family’s home since July have led to no signs of the missing boy.
A remote forested piece of land sounds as if it may be a place that would relate to a possible suspect, can one hope? Either through cell data, somewhere the person frequents or land owned by a suspect or relative?
 
The family of a missing five-year-old boy will be participating in a Christmas Eve candlelight vigil.

The public vigil for Michael Vaughn will take place at Fruitland City Park at 7:30 p.m. at Fruitland City Park. The event’s organizer say through their Facebook page they are trying to show unity with the Vaughan family.
 
It is heartbreaking to think of these families with missing children at Christmas. It is a perfect time to pray for miracles.
 
Michael Vaughan missing for almost 6 months
Next Thursday, January 27th, will mark six months since anyone saw 5-year-old Michael Vaughan.

CBS2 has reached out to Fruitland Police but has not received any new updates.
 

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