Sighting of kidnapped boy, suspect in Delano doesn't pan out

5:59 PM, Jan 20, 2011   |    comments
  • Juliani Cardenas
  • Jose Esteban Rodriguez
  • Juliani Cardenas
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SLIDESHOW: Search for kidnapped boy

STANISLAUS COUNTY, CA - Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department got a tip Thursday afternoon that the man suspected of abducting a Patterson 4-year-old boy was spotted in Delano, CA, but the tip did not pan out.

Juliani Cardenas was taken forcibly from his grandmother by the child's mother's ex-boyfriend Jose Esteban Rodriguez on the 300 block of Barros Street in Patterson at 4:12 p.m. Tuesday, according to Chief Tori Hughes with the Stanislaus County Sheriff Department.

Stanislaus County Sheriff Spokesman Raj Singh said local authorities looked into the tip. However, after talking to the person who reported the sighting, investigators determined it wasn't them.

Delano, which is about 40 miles north of Bakersfield.

Juliani is Hispanic, 3 feet 6 inches tall and 40 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. He wore a light blue fleece zip-up top with black sweatpants and Spider-Man shoes that light up.

Rodriguez, 27, is described as Hispanic, 5 feet 9 inches tall and 180 pounds. He has black hair and brown eyes. When last seen, he wore a black and white shirt, checkered pants and a beanie.

Authorities said Rodriguez was driving a 2003 silver Toyota Corolla, California license plate 6HBW445 with oversize aluminum wheels and dark tinted windows. The right front wheel was a smaller spare.

A tip came in Wednesday afternoon that the suspect's car was spotted going into the Delta-Mendota Canal near Patterson. Divers found a car that was similar to the description of the suspect's car, but the search turned up no sign of the boy or the suspect.

The Stanislaus County sheriff said the search for Juliani is "almost back to square one."

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Juliani, Rodriquez or the car are asked to call 911.


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