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Private detective joins search for missing toddler

A private detective investigating the case of missing 2-year-old DeOrr Kunz Jr. believes the boy is alive and was probably abducted.

“I feel that there is a possibility that he is still alive. Other kids have been abducted and located months, sometimes years later,” said Frank Vilt, a retired federal marshal with 19 years law enforcement experience.

Kunz turned up missing during a camping trip with his family at the Timber Creek Campground at Stone Reservoir in Lemhi County on July 10.

Vilt, a former Kunz family friend who now works as a private detective in Montpelier, was critical of the Lemhi County Sheriff’s office for failing to follow up on potential leads. One of them was a tip from a woman who said she saw a boy matching Kunz’s description near Caldwell, Idaho. The boy was with a man in an older model tan Buick with Oklahoma license plates and had taken a ride with the woman to get gas.

“I’m not saying that the Lemhi County Sherrif’s Office had tunnel vision, but they should have expanded their search and put out an amber alert,” said Vilt.

Vilt said that had the Sheriff’s Office acted sooner, he believes they could have gotten surveillance footage from the gas station near Caldwell.

“I’ve called the department several times and they’ve never returned my call,” said Vilt.

Vilt established a national tip-line on Tuesday. He says the line has received about 30 tips so far, from as far away as the Caribbean.

The hotline number is 1-888-852-6505.

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