A 9-year-old boy, Hasebul Nehan, who went missing Wednesday night from an IKEA store in Brooklyn, New York, has died after first-responders pulled him from a nearby channel after a frantic three-hour search, according to police.
Surveillance video captured around 9 p.m. local time Wednesday shows the child exiting the rear of the furniture superstore, which leads to a boardwalk and pier on the Erie Basin, the New York City Police Department said..
Investigators reportedly recovered “articles of clothing” belonging to the child before he was discovered after midnight Thursday in the Red Hook Channel, the NYPD said.
Hasebul Nehan was pulled from the waters in critical condition and taken to the New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, where NYPD said he was pronounced dead about an hour later.
Multiple media outlets have reported that the boy was autistic and nonverbal.
Authorities described Nehan’s death as a tragic accident. Criminal charges are not expected.
In an interview with CBS News, the boy’s mother, Abida Sultan, said a nanny had been watching Nehan while the group was inside the IKEA in Red Hook, a neighbourhood in western Brooklyn. She told the outlet Nehan had disappeared quickly from everyone’s sight without being noticed.
Sultan said the family searched for half an hour and pleaded with IKEA staff to check security cameras in the store.
Early Thursday morning, about three hours after his disappearance, Nehan’s body was reportedly discovered at the edge of the basin. Earlier, only his orange Crocs had been found by the water.
Sultan said she never would have expected Nehan, who apparently had an affinity for bodies of water, to run to the basin.
“He doesn’t speak at all. That’s why he couldn’t call, ‘Ma, help me!’” Sultan told CBS.
A representative for IKEA said the company is saddened by the news of Nehan’s death.
“We at IKEA are devastated by this tragedy. Our hearts are with the family at this difficult time,” the statement reads.
The child’s death comes about two weeks after the body of a 27-year-old Manhattan man was pulled from a creek located near a massive music complex in Brooklyn.
When John Castic was found dead in the borough’s Newton Creek, he became the second person whose body has been found this summer in those waters after last being seen at the Brooklyn Mirage, a popular outdoor concert space. Karl Clemente, 27, of Queens, vanished from outside the same venue on June 11 and was found floating dead in the creek five days later, according to police.