Little boy’s corpse is found in pit; likely that of missing, 2-year-old


The Madera Tribune

Crime tape surrounds the scene of where investigators located the body of a small child on Thursday in a burn pit, in an orchard on the north east side of Road 21, north of Avenue 14, a few miles west of Madera. The body is believed to be that of the missing 2-year-old boy with special needs, Thaddeus Sran, who went missing on July 15. Investigators from multiple agencies along with the Fresno FBI are continuing to gather more evidence at the crime scene, according to police.

‘Good, old-fashioned police work’ leads to sad, grisly end of search

The remains of a small child were found Thursday with the help of a cadaver dog, in a burn pit in an almond orchard a few miles west of Madera, on the northeast side of Road 21, just north of Avenue 14, according to police.

The body is believed to be that of 2-year-old Thaddeus Sran, the boy with special needs who was reported missing by his parents and/or possibly abducted from his bedroom on south C Street the morning of July 15.

Investigators are still working to determine how the small boy ended up in the remote area or how long the remains had been at the scene in the orchard.

On Thursday, police launched extensive searches for the boy — who had a feeding tube inserted, was non verbal and couldn’t walk, in at least a two mile radius around the area of his home with multiple other agencies, and over a hundred people participating the week following his disappearance, but then had expressed their growing frustration when the parents had allegedly stopped cooperating with investigators.

Reviews of area surveillance systems and door-to-door canvases of the neighborhood by officers also did not reveal any suspicious activity or vehicles seen in the area of the home the night before the boy was reported missing.

Madera Police Chief Dino Lawson credited his investigators when he said, “It was good old fashioned police work that led to the discovery of this scene. No tips were involved. They worked non-stop to try and locate this missing little boy, and they did.”

“This kind of case (with a child) really tugs at the heart. It’s always difficult, for all of us. Even after 34 years on this job I’m still affected by it.” he said.

Lawson thanked the Madera community for its concern and outpouring of support and went on to say the awful discovery was not the outcome anyone had been hoping for, but at least the small child had been located and the uncertainty was over.

“The investigation into this death is ongoing,” Lawson said, “and we regret we are not able to release any further details at this time. Evidence results (from previous days) are still pending, and this new crime scene still has to be thoroughly processed. Everything is still on the table (in this investigation) and we haven’t ruled anything out,” he said.

The three other children at the Sran home have reportedly been placed with Child Protective Services for the time being, according to police.

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