MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. — The mother of a 4-year-old boy reported missing from a mid-Michigan Indian reservation said Monday she is holding out hope that he'll be found safe as additional searches were planned.
Jaimee Chamberlain, 21, told The Associated Press on Monday that her son, Carnel Chamberlain, was being cared for by her boyfriend at her home near Mount Pleasant when the child disappeared Thursday.
She said when she got home from work that night, her boyfriend – who regularly spent time with her and the child – told her Carnel wasn't there.
"I ran inside and looked around. I didn't know what to do," said Chamberlain, who went to a neighbor's home to see if she could find Carnel and then called police.
After staying home during the early portion of the search at the request of police, Chamberlain said she has been joining those looking for her son.
"I just want my son home and I don't want people to stop looking," she said.
Authorities planned to regroup Monday after search teams, the FBI, police dogs and more than 100 volunteers scoured the area Sunday, said Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe spokesman Frank Cloutier. Crews on Sunday also searched ponds at a wastewater treatment plant near the child's home, but nothing significant was found, he said.
The tribe has said the boy's disappearance was "suspicious." The tribe also has said the mother's boyfriend initially had not been cooperating with authorities, but was described as "minimally cooperative" Sunday.
In earlier reports about the search, the missing boy's first name was spelled Carnell or Carnal, based on information released by the tribe.
The FBI is assisting tribal police on this case, and directed requests for information about the search to tribal police, the FBI in Detroit said Monday. The Isabella County sheriff's department also is assisting in the search, but said it couldn't release information.