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Zion police chief hopes missing baby is alive but fears the worst

Five-month-old JoshuSummaries missing Zion. | ZiPolice Department

Five-month-old Joshua Summaries, missing in Zion. | Zion Police Department

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Updated: September 24, 2013 6:31AM

As authorities continued to search for a missing baby on Thursday, Zion Police Chief Wayne Brooks said, “My hope is the baby is alive, my fear is no . . . that we’re now [at] the point of looking at the worst.”

Concerned that 5-month-old Joshua Summeries may have been “harmed or worse,” Brooks asked residents to search their property and garbage cans in hopes of locating him.

“They are an obvious place to dispose or hide anything of evidentiary value,” Zion Police Chief Wayne Brooks said Thursday.

Since there is a risk of losing evidence, Brooks also has asked waste hauler Advance Disposal to delay garbage pickup for another day.

The baby’s mother alerted authorities Wednesday morning that her baby had been abducted from a Zion apartment Wednesday morning.

“She doesn’t know who took the baby,” Brooks said.

Police placed a biohazard sticker on the front door of the apartment from which the baby disappeared. Brooks explained the sticker by saying: “There could be any fluids, but we’re not talking about a horrendous scene, but just enough to think things aren’t right here.”

The child’s mother’s boyfriend was questioned Wednesday and Thursday and he was a person of interest, Brooks said. Several other people also were being interviewed as persons of interest, he said. Police found the boyfriend on Wednesday — after canvassing the neighborhood and showing his picture to neighbors, Brooks said.

Brooks said law enforcement officers are committed to finding Joshua and will use all available resources. The reported abduction sparked a massive search by about 125 law enforcement officers, emergency workers and bloodhounds.

Fifty officers were searching the area near the mother’s apartment Thursday. The search area was narrowed from the original six blocks in every direction from the apartment.

Brooks reported that the city also used its reverse-telephone call system to enlist help from residents.

Contributing: Mitch Dudek

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