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DNA Test Confirms Remains Found In East River Belong to Avonte Oquendo

January 21, 2014

New York (January 21, 2014) -  The New York City medical examiner's office has confirmed that the human remains recovered in the East River in Queens are those of Avonte Oquendo. DNA testing confirms that the remains found last week are those of the 14-year-old boy with autism who had been missing since October of last year. Family members have been notified, according to police.

Oquendo disappeared from his Long Island City school on October 4, 2013. He was last seen on video surveillance running out the door of the school. The New York Police Department mounted an extensive search of the city and surrounding suburbs and posters of Avonte covered the city streets and subways. His family, members of the autism community and volunteers continued to search for the missing teen in the weeks and months after his disapearance. 

The cause of death has not yet been determined.

Read the Autism Speaks statement on the tragedy here.

See Danny Oquendo Jr.'s instagram tribute to Avonte here.