Homicide

Mom of Etan Patz testifies in suspect's murder trial; boy vanished in 1979, body never found

  • FILE - In this Sept. 15, 2014, file photo, Julie Patz, mother of Etan Patz, leaves a courtroom in New York. Pedro Hernandez, who is accused of killing Patz, told police 33 years after they boy's 1979 disappearance, that he choked the 6-year-old and put the still-living boy into a plastic bag, boxed up the bag and left it on a street. Opening statements in Hernandez's trial are set for Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 15, 2014, file photo, Julie Patz, mother of Etan Patz, leaves a courtroom in New York. Pedro Hernandez, who is accused of killing Patz, told police 33 years after they boy's 1979 disappearance, that he choked the 6-year-old and put the still-living boy into a plastic bag, boxed up the bag and left it on a street. Opening statements in Hernandez's trial are set for Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Shira Patz, sister of Etan Patz, center, and Stan Patz, father of Etan Patz, second from right, arrive at court in New York, Monday, Feb. 2, 2015. Thirty-five years after the disappearance of  6-year-old Etan Patz in Manhattan ushered in an era of protectiveness for America's children, a trial began Friday for Pedro Hernandez, a mentally ill man with a low IQ who confessed to his murder and kidnapping. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

    Shira Patz, sister of Etan Patz, center, and Stan Patz, father of Etan Patz, second from right, arrive at court in New York, Monday, Feb. 2, 2015. Thirty-five years after the disappearance of 6-year-old Etan Patz in Manhattan ushered in an era of protectiveness for America's children, a trial began Friday for Pedro Hernandez, a mentally ill man with a low IQ who confessed to his murder and kidnapping. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)  (The Associated Press)

  • Stan Patz, father of Etan Patz, arrives atcourt in New York, Monday, Feb. 2, 2015.  Thirty-five years after the disappearance of  6-year-old Etan Patz in Manhattan ushered in an era of protectiveness for America's children, a trial began Friday for Pedro Hernandez, a mentally ill man with a low IQ who confessed to his murder and kidnapping. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

    Stan Patz, father of Etan Patz, arrives atcourt in New York, Monday, Feb. 2, 2015. Thirty-five years after the disappearance of 6-year-old Etan Patz in Manhattan ushered in an era of protectiveness for America's children, a trial began Friday for Pedro Hernandez, a mentally ill man with a low IQ who confessed to his murder and kidnapping. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)  (The Associated Press)

The mother of a 6-year-old boy who vanished on his way to school 35 years ago is testifying in the New York murder trial of a store clerk accused of killing him.

Julie Patz (payts) began her testimony Monday recounting her time living in SoHo when Etan (AY'-tahn) was little. She was the last relative to see him alive.

Etan disappeared on his way to school May 25, 1979. It was his first time walking to school alone.

Julie Patz is testifying in the trial of Pedro Hernandez, who has pleaded not guilty.

Hernandez confessed to the crime in 2012 in a lengthy videotaped statement to authorities. His lawyer says he can't distinguish between reality and fantasy.

Etan's body hasn't been found. The investigation has stretched over continents and decades.