Boy with autism, 9, found dead in Florida after abduction; Amber Alert canceled

Alejandro Ripley, 9, was abducted from a Home Depot parking lot Thursday night and found dead Friday, police say. (Miami-Dade Police Department)

MIAMI — A 9-year-old boy with autism was found dead in Florida Friday after the child was reported kidnapped, authorities say.

Alejandro Ripley was taken outside of a Home Depot in Miami on Thursday night. An Amber Alert issued for him has since been canceled.

“We are very sad to report that the child was found deceased,” the Florida Department of Law Enforcement tweeted Friday morning, without providing further details.

One of the Home Depot’s employees had told WSVN that Ripley was abducted after two unknown men rammed their vehicle into his mother’s car.

“The passenger of the vehicle exits the vehicle, approaches the mother, and demands drugs,” Miami-Dade police detective Angel Rodriguez also told reporters. “The mother is insisting that she does not have any drugs. And so the passenger at that point reaches in, grabs her cell phone, steals her cell phone, and takes her child.”

Officials described the suspects as two black males – one of which may have been wearing all black clothing and a black bandana over his face. They fled the scene in a light blue sedan.

The Miami-Dade Police Department also said Ripley had autism and was non-verbal.

Investigators are warning the public not to approach the suspects if spotted – but instead to call law enforcement immediately.

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