Task force looking for missing Ore. boy to disband

A task force that has conducted more than 3,500 interviews and invested more than 26,650 hours investigating the disappearance of a 7-year-old Oregon boy from his Portland area school one year ago is set to disband at the end of the month.

A lead sheriff's detective will continue to work full time on the Kyron Horman case, with help from the FBI, Oregon Justice Department and county prosecutors, Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Staton told The Oregonian newspaper.

"Obviously I'm disappointed we haven't found him, we haven't made an arrest, but I'm not disappointed with the progress of the investigation," he said. "There isn't a night I don't think any of us don't wish we had come to a conclusion by now."

Over the past year, authorities have compiled 68 four-inch binders of information and collected more than 4,500 leads. In addition to investigators' work, search and rescue officials and volunteers have put in 24,638 hours toward looking for Horman, who was last seen June 4, 2010, at a science fair at Skyline School.

The multi-agency task force has looked at registered sex offenders in the area of the school and have also examined the Horman home, visitors to the school that day and others who may have made cellphone calls that were routed to towers near the school, the Horman home and nearby Sauvie Island the morning the boy disappeared.

Multnomah County sheriff's detectives, FBI agents and up to four state investigators are among the task force members who have spent the past six months examining at least 60 persons of interest.

No suspects have been named in a case that has cost more than $1.4 million. The Oregonian reported the boy's stepmother, Terri Moulton Horman, remains the focus of investigators. Her lawyer has repeatedly declined comment.

The newspaper said "millions of data points" still need to be examined. Those points come from all the cellphone calls picked up by 11 towers within a certain radius of the school — what investigators call "ground zero" — during the six-hour span when Horman was last seen at the morning science fair and when he was reported missing after it was discovered he wasn't on an afternoon school bus.

Investigators do not know what happened to the boy, and have considered a number of possibilities, including that he was abducted, was a victim of human trafficking or was killed, The Oregonian reported. The investigation will remain active until the boy is found, there's an arrest or there are no further leads, Staton said.

"We're not going to call it a task force anymore," the sheriff said. "If something breaks, then we'll bring everybody back together."


Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com