PATTERSON, Stanislaus County (AP) — Authorities say a DNA test has confirmed that the boy whose body was pulled from a Central California canal is that of 4-year-old Juliani Cardenas.
California Department of Justice officials on Friday said they notified the Stanislaus County sheriff’s department about the results. Detectives later notified the boy’s mother, Tabitha Cardenas.
Juliani’s body was found Tuesday in the Delta-Mendota Canal, two weeks after his mother’s ex-boyfriend, 27-year-old Jose Rodriguez, allegedly snatched the boy from his grandmother’s arms in Patterson.
A farmworker later reported seeing Rodriguez’s silver 2003 Toyota Corolla go into the canal with a man and a boy inside. The car was recovered last week with no bodies inside.
Authorities suspect Rodriguez’s body is also in the canal.
Funeral services for Juliani are pending.
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