Three Months Later, Where's Kyron?
Sept. 3) -- Saturday will mark the three-month anniversary of the mysterious disappearance of Kyron Horman, and for everyone involved in the case of the missing Oregon boy, tensions are high as authorities remain tight-lipped about the status of the investigation.
No suspects have been named, but a grand jury has been meeting for more than a month. Kyron's eighth birthday, meanwhile, is coming up next week.
"No new information to provide at this time," the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office told AOL News this week.
According to a former FBI agent who has worked dozens of missing-person cases, that's not unusual in an investigation of this nature.
"I can only speculate, but based upon my experience, I can tell you there are two types of cases," Harold Copus, now head of Copus Security Consultants in Atlanta, told AOL News. "There are quick-hit cases that require little investigation and result in a quick arrest, and then there are cases, such as this one, that require an intensive investigation."
Copus added: "Quite frankly, if you don't do X, Y and Z in cases like this, you will get egg on your face."
Kyron's stepmother, Terri Moulton Horman, has said she last saw Kyron walking to his classroom at Skyline Elementary School in Portland on June 4. When the boy failed to return home later that day, his family called the school and discovered Kyron was missing. Multiple searches have been conducted, but to date authorities have found no sign of Kyron.
In the weeks following Kyron's disappearance, his father obtained a restraining order against Terri, after learning she was allegedly involved in a murder-for-hire plot. The order also detailed Kaine Horman's belief that his wife played a role in his son's disappearance.
"I believe [Terri Moulton Horman] is involved in the disappearance of my son Kyron," reads Kaine Horman's request for a restraining order.
The restraining order not only prevents Terri Horman from having contact with her husband but also prohibits any contact with their 19-month-old daughter.
On the same day that the request for the order was filed, Kaine Horman also filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences.
The alleged murder-for-hire plot mentioned in court documents came to light in mid-June, when The Oregonian reported that a landscaper once employed by the Horman family told police Terri Horman had offered him a "large sum of money" to kill her husband.
Although she has not been named as a suspect or person of interest in the case, Terri Horman has hired prominent criminal defense lawyer Stephen Houze.
The grand jury convened in July to hear testimony in the case. Grand jury testimony in such cases typically lasts only a couple of weeks, but the fact that the jury is still convened means little, says one veteran defense attorney.
"It's [a] confidential [proceeding], so we don't really know what's going on," Steve Cron, a criminal defense attorney in Santa Monica, Calif., told AOL News. "On the face of it, it seems like an extraordinary amount of time, but we don't know if they've been meeting every day."
The district attorney's office did not return calls from AOL News, and it is unclear how long the proceedings will continue.
In his experience, Cron says, most grand jury cases do end with an indictment.
"I have rarely heard [of a case] where the prosecutor has gone to a grand jury to try to get somebody indicted and wasn't able to do it," Cron said. "It's a pretty easy task. Once you have someone indicted, that gives the police department any authority they want to go out and arrest somebody."
Silence on behalf of law enforcement should also not be interpreted to mean that the investigation has stalled, Copus said.
"At this stage, it looks like nothing is happening, but if you look below the water, the legs are really moving."
Kyron's biological parents did not respond to an interview request from AOL News.
On Aug. 27, Kyron's father and his mother, Desiree Young, spoke with reporters about the case. During the news conference, Young said she had "something to say to Terri."
"Terri, I feel like you are at a crossroads in your life," Young said, reading a prepared statement. "Our lives present moments like these, and we're not always going to like what life gives us. ... I don't doubt that the situation makes you feel like you don't have a choice, but you do and you always have.
"What you are going to be remembered for is what you do with these choices and how you handle it. How do you want to be remembered? This is not going to get any easier for you. The police will not stop until they find Kyron. You will go to jail."
Young said she did not confer with law enforcement officers before making the statement. "They did not help me format or review this statement in any way," she said.
"They are frustrated," Copus said. "They don't understand what is going on, and in their own way they are trying to put pressure on the stepmom. Psychologically, that sometimes works, but it can also backfire. It definitely draws a line in the dirt."
Kyron's parents said they plan to mark his Sept. 9 birthday with a remembrance in Medford and the Portland area.
Kyron's parents also continued to share their belief that their son is still alive and needs to be rescued, something Copus said is unlikely.
"Chances are slim to none," Copus said. "I hope I am wrong, but the outcome is seldom good. There are, of course, rare situations such as [that of] Elizabeth Smart, so there is always a remote possibility."
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