Missing 6-year-old Lakeland boy with special needs found dead in pond

Adam Roach was reported missing. Polk County Sheriff's Office

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd has confirmed the 6-year-old boy officials searched for Friday night has been found dead in a retention pond near his home.

Adam Roach was found in the pond directly behind his home at 10:40 p.m. by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office dive team, assisted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Roach was a non-verbal special needs child.

Roach’s parents called the Sheriff’s Office around 4 p.m. Friday.

“They actually heard the door open and close, and though it was one of the other children. It was just a matter of minutes. Of course, then they scrambled outside and looked for him,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

The search for Roach lasted almost seven hours. Sheriff K9 units and a helicopter were used.

Roach was found not far from his home.

“Little Adam was not 50 feet from the back door of his house in a lake, a retention pond if you will. It appears at this time, and this is all preliminary information at this time, that he walked out the front door and around the corner of his apartment complex and directly into the retention pond,” said Judd.

Sheriff Judd says they believe Roach may have been trying to go to the pool. His grandmother took him there on Thursday to play.

A death investigation will be conducted.

Roach was a student at Dr. N.E. Roberts Elementary School. Superintendent Jacqueline Byrd released this statement:

Adam Roach was, as we say within the district, ‘one of ours.’ He had just completed kindergarten at Roberts Elementary, and faculty and staff at the school were looking forward to seeing him when school starts next week. He was a precious child lost much too soon, and we are all grieving. He and his family are in our prayers. We will have grief counselors on site at the school on Monday and when school begins on Thursday to assist employees and students.”

STORIES OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON

>> BACK TO TOP STORIES

WFLA.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s