Weird News

Missing Boy Charlie Bothuell May Have Been An Abused Runaway But Something Doesn’t Add Up

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charlie bothuell IVA couple of days ago Mommyish writer Maria Guido reported on case of 12-year-old Charlie Bothuell, who until Wednesday was believed to be missing from his Detroit area home. On Wednesday police inexplicably found Charlie, alive, barricaded behind some boxes in the family’s basement. The strange part about this is that the basement had been searched by numerous people beforehand, including the child’s family, the local police and reportedly even the FBI. Now certain news sources are insinuating that Charlie may have been an abused runaway, and the story just gets weirder from there.

Earlier this week, the always professional Nancy Grace broke the news that the child had been found to the father, Charlie Bothuell IV, live on the air. In typical Nancy Grace fashion, instead of cutting the segment short, she continued to grill Bathuell Sr., insinuating that he had something to do with the incident. Well, apparently, as annoying as she can be sometimes, Nancy may have been right, as much as it pains me to say anything positive about that vile opportunist. .

According to The Detroit Free Press, Little Charlie Bothuell told police that his step mom was the one who allegedly placed him in the basement and told him “not to come out, no matter what he hears.” Charlie was missing for a gob-smacking 11 days, and according to reports there were signs of physical abuse, including scars on his behind and chest. Charlie claims that neither parent brought him food, so he would sneak upstairs to smuggle something down whenever the rest of the family was out of the home.

Everything about this story sounds creepy and shady to me. Though both the boy’s father and his stepmother Monique Dillard-Bothuell insist that they had no idea their son was hiding right under their noses, the evidence seems pretty inconclusive to me. In addition to Charlie’s injuries, authorities also discovered a bloody PVC pipe believed to have been used as a weapon on Charlie, and the child’s grandmother says he was skeletal when she saw him last. From The Detroit Free Press:

“According to the petition filed in juvenile court, Charlie’s grandmother told an FBI investigator that the last time she saw Charlie, “he was very skinny, and almost looked like a cancer patient. He had marks all over his arms and chest.”

To be fair, Bothuell Sr. claims that the two got into an argument over unfinished chores, and that Charlie simply ran away. The oh-so reliable Daily Mail goes as far as to suggest, through unnamed “neighbors,” that Charlie was seen playing basketball while the investigation was going on, and was able to come and go as he pleases through a tunnel that led to the basement area. This would explain how police were able to search the area and find nothing. But even if that were the case, something doesn’t seem right here.

First, there is the alleged evidence of abuse and the grandmother’s statements about his health. Secondly, even if it’s true that Charlie ran away and was using the barricaded area to sleep, why did he do that? What was going on in the home? How did he manage it for almost two whole weeks? And if these unnamed “neighbors” The Daily Mail spoke to saw the boy, why wasn’t this reported? The Daily Mail also mentions more unnamed sources that claim the father was a strict dad with irrational rules (like forcing the child to do 4000 strides on a treadmill daily) and that this may have spurred Charlie to run away, but none of this is substantiated.

Obviously we must assume innocence until proven guilty, but something ain’t right here and I think someone knows a lot more than they’re letting on.

(Photo: YouTube)


  1. Liz

    June 28, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    The way he continued the interview and never asked to see his son was weird. If my kid had been missing for 11 days and was found, I would’ve bolted out of that interview chair so fast.

  2. Lackadaisical

    June 29, 2014 at 3:29 am

    No matter how much she is proved right in her suspicions I still don’t think her interview was appropriate. If he or his wife are guilty the police are capable of finding that out. I am all for freedom of the press, if there were incompetence or corruption taking place in the investigation then of course the media should report on that and keep pressing for example, but she is not Scooby Doo and his gang, she doesn’t get to interfere with police procedure and investigations to conduct the first interview with the suspect and make it live on air.

    If the grandmother noticed he was underfed and covered in cuts and bruises and suspected abuse then surely she should have notified the authorities at the time rather than after the kid goes missing. If she suspected abuse and kept quiet then she let her grandson down. If she didn’t think he was abused at the time and is claiming it was obvious he was at the time then she isn’t being helpful. Of course she may have reported it and they may have been under investigation before he went missing but the police kept quiet about it, in which case I can understand.

    • whiteroses

      June 29, 2014 at 9:19 am

      This. Even if the boy was abused, Nancy Grace is still scum.

    • Frances Frumpy Mumps Locke

      June 29, 2014 at 6:08 pm

      Oh trust me, I am still super disgusted by Nancy Disgrace. She is a skeevy opportunist who makes every situation worse.

    • Lackadaisical

      June 29, 2014 at 7:17 pm

      I realise that you are not in the Nancy fan club, I just think how she handled it is so awful that I needed to rant some more.

    • Frances Frumpy Mumps Locke

      June 29, 2014 at 7:31 pm

      I seriously dislike that woman. I can’t even, lol

  3. Rowan

    June 29, 2014 at 4:44 am

    I wouldn’t believe anything the Daily Mail says. It’s a crock of sensationalist shite.

    • Lackadaisical

      June 29, 2014 at 5:17 am

      Agreed, they have all the journalistic integrity of a dead rodent. My elderly nan lives with my parents and has always got that rag which is why she always took a pop at my teacher mum for modern teachers supposedly being incompetent scum. Whenever I visit and peruse a copy I am always stunned by willfully misrepresented or inaccurate pieces where a desire to provoke a reaction trumps truth and adverts pretending to be articles.

    • Rowan

      June 30, 2014 at 4:51 am

      Russell Howard said it best…

    • Lackadaisical

      June 30, 2014 at 8:37 am

      Talking of Russell Howard and newspapers, when people outside of the UK quote our newspapers perhaps this will give context

    • Rowan

      July 1, 2014 at 1:31 am

      Love that one.

    • Frances Frumpy Mumps Locke

      June 29, 2014 at 6:05 pm

      Totally agree, hence my uber sarcastic “oh-so reliable” comment, lol.

  4. Frannie

    June 29, 2014 at 7:21 am

    I’ve only read the Mommyish accounts of this story, so forgive me for asking this if it has already been covered- but why would a family call to report a child missing if they knew where he was, and were essentially torturing him in their own home? Wouldn’t that draw attention to the abuse and increase the likelihood they’d be caught and prosecuted? I was abused as a child, and my family was the absolute picture of perfection out in public.

    • whiteroses

      June 29, 2014 at 9:20 am

      Either that, or to cover their tracks if he actually was missing…. god, I watch too much Deadly Women.

    • SunnyD847

      June 29, 2014 at 3:58 pm

      I am reserving judgement since I don’t know what happened, but if the parents did have something to do with it, maybe they WANTED they attention. Like that dad who deliberately sent his kid up in a balloon and then claimed it was an accident so he could get media exposure, it seems like there is no end to what people will do to get their 15 minutes of fame.

    • Frances Frumpy Mumps Locke

      June 29, 2014 at 6:06 pm

      Good question. Perhaps one parent was abusing the child and the other unaware? This seems unlikely, but not impossible. Some accounts suggest that the step mom was hiding the son from the dad, but I’ve seen no evidence of this in reliable accounts of the story.

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