Etan Patz Suspect Arrested
New York City Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly announced on Thursday the arrest of a man in the killing of Etan Patz The New York Times called this "an extraordinary moment in a case that has gripped New York City’s psyche ever since the 6-year-old boy vanished in SoHo on his way to school in 1979." The NYT also quoted Mr. Kelly as saying during a news conference at police headquarters, "We believe that this is the individual responsible for the crime."
The news comes one month after authorities reported that they had not found the remains of Etan after searching in a basement near where he vanished. I am especially riveted by this turn of events because every mention of Etan's disappearance brings back searing memories of the posters that were all over New York City after he went missing. I live in NYC and my son was six years old in 1979. Not only that, but he looked remarkably like Etan, with a winning grin and a blond-ish bowl haircut. Etan's image – pictures artfully taken by his professional photographer father – seemed to be everywhere I looked as I made my way around town. Each time I saw one, my throat closed up and my heart raced.
I had precisely that same visceral reaction this morning, a day before the 33rd anniversary of Etan's disappearance, when I first learned that NYC Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly had issued a statement saying: “An individual now in custody has made statements to N.Y.P.D. detectives implicating himself in the disappearance and death of Etan Patz 33 years ago. We expect to provide further details later today.”