Update: Missing Sauk County boy found safe in Virginia, mother arrested, police say
A 9-year-old boy who was taken from his grandparents’ custody in Merrimac by his mother was found safe Thursday in Virginia, the Sauk County Sheriff’s Office said.
Mason Byrdic and his mother, Julia Anne Byrdic, 29, of Pompano Beach, Florida, were found hiding in a bedroom at a residence in Virginia Beach, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Julia Byrdic was arrested on a tentative felony charge of interference with custody beyond visitation, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Mason’s grandparents had given Julia Byrdic permission to take Mason on an outing Sunday morning, but they reported the boy missing when she didn’t return him as agreed upon, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Byrdic was believed to have fled the state with the child, Sheriff Chip Meister said in a statement Wednesday.
The boy had been placed with the grandparents by the state of Virginia courts, the Sheriff’s Office said.
The Sheriff’s Office said it identified a potential location for Julia Byrdic and her son Thursday afternoon, and the Virginia Beach Police Department searched the building and found the two in a back bedroom.
Byrdic had been driving a rental car and had turned off her cellphone after she took Mason, according to the Sheriff’s Office said.
Mason is in the care of the Virginia Beach Police Department and Child Protective Services as his guardians travel to pick him up, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Byrdic is awaiting extradition to Sauk County.