Police now say, the friend who reported he had been kidnapped, lied to cover-up for what really happened.
Investigators immediately issued a two-state amber alert searching for Zane Newton after a friend reported him abducted. After 8 hours, his body was found buried in a ditch less than a block from his house.
Sad news struck south Bakersfield after the search for 9-year-old Zane Newton came to a tragic end. The 4th grader was discovered dead buried under dirt in this fenced off lot not far from his home.
The search for the boy began Wednesday morning after a friend claimed Newton was kidnapped in the neighborhood. Police were told the suspect rolled up in a car, shot at the boys with a paintball gun and kidnapped Newton.
Freeway signs lit up here in the valley and across the state. And officers pulled over several cars that matched the suspect's vehicle description.
Things changed quickly when a resident in Newton's neighborhood told police she noticed boys playing in an abandoned lot near her home. And after questioning the boy who reported Newton kidnapped police realized the abduction was a lie. It appears that the kidnapping and shooting incident was fabricated.
Investigators did not officially release the name of the boy found buried in the hole but say they're certain it's Newton. "Based on the information, the discovery that we've had, we have received some additional information from the juvenile that we're interviewing that confirms what we believe happened so far today," said Sergeant Greg Terry with the Bakersfield Police.
Police were not able to discuss if the boy who lied will face criminal charges. The Kern County Coroner is expected to release the official cause of death later this week, but for now police are calling it an accidental death.