Missing 20-year-old with autism from the Bronx found dead in Harlem River

News 12 reached out to the medical examiner’s office, who says the cause and manner of death are pending further study following the initial examination.

News 12 Staff

Sep 9, 2021, 9:26 PM

Updated 1,011 days ago

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A Bronx mother's search for her missing son has come to a tragic end as police confirmed his death on Thursday. 
Claribel Castillo says her 20-year-old son Chris, who has autism, went missing from their Bronx home on East 181st Street just after 3 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 30. 
After a week of searching, she says police told her on Sunday that he had been found dead. 
"That was the first time he ever traveled on his own, that was the first time he left the home,” said Castillo. 
Castillo formed search parties and hung flyers, desperately searching for her son and communicating with police throughout the week. 
"I received a phone call from the detectives on Thursday asking, you know, specifics about Chris' clothing, I found that very strange, but the detective said that he was just trying to be thorough,” said Castillo. 
Police now say an unidentified person found in the Harlem River on the same day her son went missing was later identified as Chris Castillo. 
She now wants answers about the timeline of how things unfolded, his cellphone and the location of his body. 
"As a mother, I just need to connect the dots...I was searching for no reason because they had found the body,” said Castillo. 
She says above all else she wants her kind-hearted son to know he wasn’t alone. Castillo says she’s in the process of making Chris’ final resting arrangements. 
News 12 reached out to the medical examiner’s office, who says the cause and manner of death are pending further study following the initial examination.


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