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Missing boy found after spending night inside Target

The 12-year-old had reportedly run away from his home in Columbus, Ohio, the night before being found.
The bullseye logo on a sign outside a Target store.
Posted at 5:19 PM, Mar 12, 2024

A child who was reported missing Sunday night was located Monday morning inside a Target store in Columbus, Ohio. 

The Columbus Dispatch reports that an employee who was in charge of opening the store around 6 a.m. discovered the child and contacted authorities.

Police initially said the boy was 7 years old, but later confirmed he was 12. 

He reportedly had ran away from home Sunday night. The Dispatch says his parents filed a missing persons report with police, but were unable to locate him until he was discovered inside the Target store. 

It's unclear when the boy made his way inside the Target or what he did while alone inside the store. 

The boy was placed in the care of Franklin Child Services until his parents picked him up on Sunday. 

"The child’s parents are happy that he is safe and that he will be returning home shortly," Columbus police spokesperson Jennifer Watson said in a statement to the Columbus Dispatch. 

Scripps News reached out to Target for more information about the incident and the employee who discovered the child, but did not hear back. 

The retailer did provide a brief statement to WSYX, the ABC affiliate in Columbus, noting that the well-being of their guests is a "top priority."

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