Missing Autistic Man Found in Whittier

Miguel Castillo, Jr., was on his first outing with a special needs support organization when he disappeared

By Ted Chen and Sharon Bernstein
|  Tuesday, Nov 20, 2012  |  Updated 10:39 PM PDT
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A 30-year-old man with severe autism was found safe thanks to a stranger who realized he had special needs, took care of him and escorted him to a shelter. Ted Chen reports for NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Nov. 20, 2012.

Ted Chen

A 30-year-old man with severe autism was found safe thanks to a stranger who realized he had special needs, took care of him and escorted him to a shelter. Ted Chen reports for NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Nov. 20, 2012.

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A 30-year-old man with severe autism was found safe on Tuesday, thanks to a Good Samaritan who found him wandering near Whittier and took him to a shelter.

Police and family members had asked for help finding Miguel Castillo, Jr., who went missing on Monday at a Metro station in downtown Los Angeles.

Throughout his life, Castillo -- who cannot speak -- had always been cared for by family members. Then on Monday, during his first outing with a Culver City special needs organization, he disappeared.

The group was on a field trip that stopped at the Seventh Street/Metro Center transit station when caregivers lost track of Castillo.

“I can’t stress how terrified we are,” Castillo’s sister, Myrna Almodovar, said at a news conference.

Family members said Castillo’s autism prevents him from speaking, and that he has the mental capacity of a young child.

Family members said he met a stranger on Monday who realized that he had special needs, fed him, took care of him and escorted him to a shelter.

Correction: An earlier version of this story erroneously reported that the man was found in Downey. Castillo was found safe in Whittier.

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