Relatives of a California teen who was allegedly hidden for two years by a school teacher say they were racked with pain fearing the boy they had reported missing might be dead.
The “family was suffering in agony every day wondering what happened to him and whether he was dead or alive,”Inside Edition Digital was told by Katte Smith. Smith and her husband were the boy’s aunt, uncle, and legal guardians.
According to his aunt, Michael Ramirez was only 15 when he fled home from a family dispute over discipline. According to authorities, his family reported him missing in June 2020.
The teen was not found after a thorough search by Rancho Cordova police officers and Sacramento County Sheriff’s Deputies. Fliers were distributed throughout the region. Smith posted the photos on her Facebook page along with Ramirez’s photos and pleas for Ramirez’s safe return.
Interviews were conducted by her and her husband with local media. Ramirez was then born in March. “inexplicably”Police said that he had returned to his family. Police said that the teen now 17 said he wanted back to the family. Authorities also said that he had been staying with his mom, who was his childhood girlfriend.
On Oct. 20, Holga Castillo Olivares, 61, was arrested by Rancho Cordova Police officers, according to a statement. She was charged with detention of a minor with intent to conceal from a parent and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, police said.
Olivares, who has been placed on leave from the Sacramento City Unified School District, taught at a kindergarten-through-eighth-grade school, the district said. District officials declined to comment due to personnel issues.
Smith stated that Smith had interviewed the teacher to find her nephew.
Smith’s family is, she claimed, a mystery “how a public school teacher could do something like this and hide a missing child for over two years. To do so knowing that there was an active police investigation into the child’s disappearance.”
Alleged actions of the teacher “robbed us of so many things, but more importantly she robbed Michael of nearly two years of education and growth as a human being,”Smith.
“He was robbed of over two years of childhood, which he’ll never get back,”His aunt stated. All questions were directed to her aunt’s lawyer. Inside Edition Digital sent a request to comment on Friday morning.
Olivares has not pleaded guilty to the charges against them. She was released on bail and told to not contact the teen or his family. Inside Edition Digital reached out to her attorney but she was not able to provide any comment.
Smith stated that her nephew and family are focused on the grieving process and helping the family heal. She asked for privacy.