Local News

Missing 4-year-old boy found safe

Posted June 16, 2008 7:20 p.m. EDT
Updated June 16, 2008 8:45 p.m. EDT

— A 4-year-old Florida boy who was the subject of an Amber Alert in North Carolina on Monday has been found safely in Virginia.

Colin Nathaniel Custer and his alleged abductor, Robert William Custer II, 45, of Naples, Fla., were located in Blacksburg, Va., around 6 p.m. Custer is Colin's father, officials confirmed.

Colin was unharmed, according to a spokesman for the sheriff's office in South Carolina's Lexington County.

Federal marshals and Virginia state police officers arrested Custer. He was armed but did not resist officers.

An Amber Alert was issued in North Carolina, because authorities believed Custer might be driving through the state on his way to Maryland.

Officials said Custer abducted Colin and his mother when they meet at a grocery store in Ocala, Fla., on Sunday. The meeting was for a scheduled custody swap.

Custer put a cloth saturated with some type of chemical over the mother's head, and she lost consciousness, officials said.

She managed to escape when Custer stopped for gas in Lexington, S.C. on Monday. The mother then reported the abduction to local authorities, they said.

A cell phone used by Custer pinged a cell tower in Hendersonville, south of Asheville in Buncombe County, around mid morning.

South Carolina state officials said they did not know if Custer would be extradited there, because the original crime occurred in Florida.

Custer shared custody with the boy's mother, but he lived with her in Summerfield, Fla.