"Ahizya's body was found deceased inside the household."
This somber news, delivered early Friday morning by Hollywood Police Chief Frank Fernandez to reporters, confirmed the tragic end of the search for 3-year-old Hollywood boy Ahizya Osceola.
A relative told New Times that the boy's biological parents are members of the Seminole Tribe — his father, part of the Panther clan, and his mother, the Wind clan.
Ahizya had gone missing Thursday morning, prompting a news conference and search for the Native American boy. His mother, Karen Cypress, said Ahizya had been with his father and stepmother on Thursday morning near their Hollywood home in the 5400 block of Johnson Street.
In an agonized plea to the public, Cypress asked anyone with information to bring Ahizya back to her.
"Please call the police department so I can have my baby back," Cypress said during the Thursday presser. "I just want him back. He's my heart; he's my life. I just want him home."
Hollywood Police dispatched K9 units during the search, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement issued a Missing Child Alert. A chopper was also sent out to sweep the area.
But Friday just before dawn, a vehicle from the Broward Medical Examiner's Office was spotted parked outside the boy's home, prompting fears that he had been found dead. Shortly before 6 a.m., Fernandez released information on the child, confirming the grim news.
"Due to developments in the case, the Hollywood Police Department is no longer seeking the public's assistance in searching for 3-year-old Ahizya Osceola," he said.
The only detail on Ahizya's death was that the boy was found in an "obscure area" of his home.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
"It was an obscure area not visible to the average person looking through the house," Fernandez said.
Because this is an ongoing investigation, police are not releasing any more information.
NBC Miami reports that police are treating it as a criminal investigation. Calls to Hollywood Police by New Times to confirm this have yet to be returned.
Follow Chris Joseph on Twitter.