Quebec police continue search for boy, father missing since Tuesday

MONTREAL — Quebec provincial police say ground searches are continuing today for a three-year-old boy allegedly abducted by his father earlier this week.

Provincial police say an Amber Alert triggered Tuesday evening for three-year-old Jake Côté and his father David Côté, 36, remains in effect in the province.

On Friday, authorities say they used DNA testing to identify items used by the pair, a discovery they believe suggests they may be found alive and are in the heavily forested area near Ste-Paule, Que., on the Gaspé Peninsula where police have been searching.

Sgt. Hélène St-Pierre says today in addition to aerial and ground searches, police have been using loudspeakers to try to reach Côté.

Late Thursday, police said they thought the suspect was hiding in a densely-forested area, noting that Côté had wilderness survival skills and could be using materials gathered from nearby chalets and trailers to survive with this son.

Police have advised the public to keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary, but to stay away from the forest and avoid taking part in the search because Côté could be armed.

The suspect is five feet seven inches tall, weighs about 180 pounds and has brown hair and blue eyes.

Police said he was last seen wearing a dark sweater with a black logo, as well as black army-style pants.

The boy has been described as having short hair and wearing a T-shirt with an image of the number six or nine in blue camouflage and with silver stripes on the sleeves and bottom.

The Amber Alert was expanded provincewide and into parts of New Brunswick on Wednesday after investigators found an all-terrain vehicle believed to be used by Côté.

The New Brunswick RCMP said in a release Friday the alert has been lifted for the Madawaska, Restigouche and Gloucester areas that border Quebec, but that the pair remain missing.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 4, 2021.

Sidhartha Banerjee, The Canadian Press

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