Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Police Say Missing Hamilton Boy Drowned, Death Is Not Considered Criminal

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Police Say Missing Hamilton Boy Drowned, Death Is Not Considered Criminal

Article excerpt

Hamilton boy's death accidental: police

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Hamilton police say they believe the death of an 11-year-old boy with disabilities who was the subject of an Amber Alert over the weekend was an accident.

The body of Finnigan Danne, who suffered from a neuromuscular disorder and had limited mobility, was found Sunday afternoon in a culvert not far from his home in the west Hamilton community of Dundas.

An autopsy was conducted Monday and the cause of the boy's death was determined to be drowning.

Police said officers and neighbourhood volunteers had searched the area where the culvert -- a storm sewer under the roadway -- was located but had not initially spotted the body because it was submerged in the water.

The body of the boy, who was initially reported to be 12 years old, was found during a later police search.

Danne went missing from his home Saturday morning, and police reported that he had been found dead Sunday evening.

Jon Bailey, who lives three doors away from Danne and spent most of the weekend looking for the boy, said he had partially crept through the culvert himself earlier in the search.

"It's a horrible feeling...I just wish I'd searched a bit harder," he said.

"I had walked in and I had gotten about 10 feet in and I slipped, and my shoes had gotten soaked, my flashlight shorted out. Instead of keeping going, I just turned around and walked out...I just kind of dismissed that spot, thinking that maybe somebody else had gone there, maybe police were going to go there. I wish I hadn't."

Moira Leggate, who also helped search for Danne, was just as shocked at where the boy was found.

"I'm stunned, because it was a really extensive search. The police were here on horseback yesterday, they went down there, I saw them do it," she told reporters after Danne's body was found. "The police were here with the dogs from yesterday from about two o'clock. I was with them. We didn't leave anything unturned."

Bailey said he had been away from home when he saw a Facebook post about Danne's disappearance. When he returned to the community, Bailey said police officers and paramedics were outside Danne's home, while some area residents were on the street. …

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