Joseph “Joe Clyde” Daniels, a five-year-old boy diagnosed with autism, was reported missing earlier this week. His parents called the authorities on Wednesday to alert them about their missing son, and officials began conducting an exhaustive search throughout Tennessee.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation issued an alert about the nonverbal youngster, but the three-day search did not turn up any leads. On Friday morning, the bureau began investigating the potential of criminal activity from the child’s relatives. By Saturday, police believed they had a prime suspect.
On Saturday morning, Joseph Ray Daniels, the boy’s father, was arrested. He has been charged with one count of criminal homicide. Police have released a statement informing the public that they have reason to believe that the Tennessee father “intentionally” killed his autistic son on Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. It’s unclear whether the suspect voluntarily confessed. Jason Locke, the deputy director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations, explained during a press conference that investigators had determined the father willfully murdered the boy in the family home and then purposely hid his son’s body from police.
Investigators believe that the five-year-old’s remains are likely somewhere around the family’s residence. Authorities have switched gears from searching for the missing boy to searching for his remains around the Dickson County family home.
Joseph Daniels is being detained in the Dickson County Jail. He currently faces a $1 million bond. While he is currently the only suspect who has been arrested regarding this case, the Dickson County Sheriff Jeff Bledsoe explains that the investigation is still ongoing.