Corona Police Chief George Johnstone announced at a press conference that efforts to find Noah McIntosh alive had turned into a search for remains.
“It is unfortunate and with a heavy heart that I must let the community know that the missing-child investigation regarding Noah McIntosh has now been escalated to a homicide case.”
On March 12, police received a call from Jillian Godfrey, 36, Noah’s mother, asking authorities to conduct a welfare check on her son after she was unable to contact him for nearly two weeks. Police attempted to contact Bryce McIntosh, the boy’s father, at his home on Temescal Canyon Road, but were unsuccessful.
The following day, after obtaining a search warrant, investigators discovered evidence inside McIntosh’s residence that allowed them to arrest both parents on child abuse charges.
“It does not make sense that the parents of an 8-year-old child would not know his whereabouts or be able to give us specific details of when he was last seen or where he last was,” Johnstone said.
The case morphed into a homicide investigation after police searched several locations in Temescal Valley, Aguanga and Murrieta that led them to believe Noah was dead.
“At the locations mentioned, we did collect trace evidence that leaves no doubt that Noah is a victim of a homicide, and that evidence was presented to the district attorney's office where the filing was made.”
District Attorney Michael Hestrin announced that despite not having found Noah’s remains, his dad, 32, was being charged with first-degree murder and special-circumstance murder or torture.
If convicted, McIntosh could face life in prison without the possibility of parole and would become eligible for the death penalty. He is set to be arraigned on Monday.
Godfrey has not been charged in the death of her son but is facing a child endangerment charge; her bail was set at $500,000.
Police say Noah’s father has refused to cooperate, and that Godfrey offered little information about the young boys whereabouts. Noah has an 11-year-old sister, but police wouldn''t say if she would serve as a witness.