CLEVELAND, Ohio — More information was released Thursday about a man police say raised a child on the run while living a double life on the west side of the city.
Police say the father , Bobby Hernandez , was going by a different name and had been living in the Tremont area for about 13 years. He is now being held in the Cuyahoga County jail.
Hernandez is accused of allegedly taking his then 5-year-old son Julian from his mother. Julian is now 18. Authorities say that Julian was found when he was trying to apply for college. He was having problems with his social security number so he went to a guidance counselor for help.
The counselor realized Hernandez was listed as missing by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Multiple agencies , including the FBI, got involved in the case. Hernandez was arrested Monday.
Neighbors describe Hernandez as a good family man. They say a woman and three children including Julian lived with him.
They said Julian often mowed the lawn for a neighbor and had recently got his black belt in karate. “I was shocked,”said neighbor Marcelino Colon.
Bobby Hernandez’s attorney says his client took excellent care of his son. “He is a very quiet gentle man who loves his son,” said Atty. Ralph DeFranco.
Hernandez , who right now is facing a tampering with records charge, is due back in court next week.
A representative for the Julian Hernandez’s mother released the following statement Thursday,”Our family was overjoyed this week to locate Julian and learn that he is safe. We want to thank everyone for their prayers and support during Julian’s disappearance. Although we appreciate the interest our story has generated, we will have to decline any requests for interviews or additional information at this time. We ask that the media respect our privacy as we focus on Julian’s well-being during this difficult time in his life.”