I always say I believe in miracles and this is one as far as I am concerned. Six year old Cole Puffinburger was kidnapped from his family’s home in Las Vegas allegedly by two men posing as police officers but they were actually drug dealers. They tied up Cole’s mother and her fiancé and ransacked the home looking for money. When they couldn’t find any they took Cole by gunpoint and left.

Now the miracle is that this precious child has been found alive and well in a neighborhood northeast of Las Vegas. Las Vegas police Capt. Vincent Cannito said Cole was in “extremely good condition” but they took him to the University Medical Center to exam him just to be sure he was completely OK.

“He is safe and in our custody,” said Cannito. “It’s a blessing this child has been found.”

Around 10:30 pm Saturday night the police received a call telling them that a child was walking alone on the street of a middle class neighborhood about 5 miles from the Las Vegas Strip according to Las Vegas police officer Jay Rivera.

When detectives responded to the call they found Cole outside a large Methodist Church in the neighborhood. Police gave no information yet as to how the child got there or where he has been since he had been kidnapped Wednesday morning.

At a press conference Cole’s father would not comment on when he planned on seeing his son or whether Cole would be going home with him or returning to his mother’s home. He praised the police and the community that rallied behind his family for all the help they done to find his son.

“This is just about Cole being home,” said Robert Puffinburger as he was all choked up. “Cole’s back.”

“I’m just glad he’s safe,” he said. “I can’t wait to see him!”

Fliers, in English and Spanish had been distributed with Cole’s picture with his slightly smiling wearing his glasses. Cole’s father, Robert Puffinburger said he has just stopped passing out fliers for the night when he got the word that his son had been found.

“They called me and they said, “We got him!” and I said, ‘You got who?’ and then I realized and was like ‘Oh my God!” He said the emotion that he felt was indescribable when he was told his son was safe.

Police has arrested Cole’s maternal grandfather in Riverside, California and he is being held as a material witness in this case. They think the kidnappers were Mexican drug dealers and that the kidnapping at gunpoint was meant to be a “message” to Clemoms Fred Tinnemeyer, the 51 year old grandfather whom they say might have stolen millions of dollars from them.

Detectives are still investigating the kidnapping and they are still looking for two other men that they think are involved in the case. One has not been identified but the other has been described as being a man in his mid- 30’s who is a Mexican citizen named Jesus Gastelum and he is believed to be in the Las Vegas or southern California area.

In the news conference Sunday, Cannito said that the abduction part of the investigation is over. “The remainder of the investigation now shifts, the focus now goes on to the drug dealing and potential extortion,” he said.

As I said I do believe in miracles and this is one for sure. Thank God this child is alive. God Bless you Cole!

Jan Barrett

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