Boy With Autism Found Safe 20 Miles From Home After Frantic Search

A 12-year-old boy with autism who went missing in Long Beach on Christmas Eve was found unharmed at a Metro station about 20 miles from home, the child's father said Friday morning.

Peter Antonio Miramontes went missing about 10 a.m. Thursday near Mountain View Street and the L.A. Riverbed. A sheriff's deputy found the child at the Pico Station in Los Angeles about 12 hours later.

"He said, 'We found him,' and then he said, 'Merry Christmas.' I was really happy. I didn't even quite believe it at first," said the boy's father, Pablo Miramontes.

Peter, described by police as having "the mental capacity of a 5-year-old," did not have any money, ID or cellphone, and had last been seen playing near his grandparents' house.

Miramontes, said he was not sure how his son got to Los Angeles, but said he suspected the boy may have boarded a Metro train in Long Beach because he's fascinated with trains.

Miramontes said his son was excited about opening Christmas gifts, and that it was out of character for him to wander off.

"He was really excited about Christmas, so he kept asking for Legos and he was counting down the days 'till Christmas," the father said.

Kate Larsen contributed to this report.

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