The Man Who Said He Was Missing Child Timmothy Pitzen Has Been Charged With Lying To The FBI – BuzzFeed News

According to the criminal complaint filed in the Southern District of Ohio, Rini only admitted that he was not Pitzen after FBI agents confronted him with the results of a DNA test.

Soon after being taken into custody by Kentucky police, Rini complained of stomach pain and was taken to the emergency room at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, FBI Task Force Officer Mary Braun wrote in the complaint. While in the hospital, he spoke to Braun and other agents who investigate child trafficking and crimes against children.

He told the FBI that he was Pitzen and that he had recently escaped from a hotel room where two men had been holding him captive. Rini said that he had been sexually and physically abused for years.

While in the hospital on Wednesday, Rini refused to let agents fingerprint him, but consented to a DNA swab. On Thursday, the DNA test not only proved that he wasn’t the missing child, but it correctly identified him as a convicted criminal who had recently been released from an Ohio prison on parole.

Armed with this information, the FBI approached Rini on Thursday and advised him of his Miranda rights and the penalty for lying to federal agents before asking him again about his identity. Per the complaint, he continued to claim that he was 14-year-old Pitzen and that he had been the victim of physical and sexual abuse for years — until he was informed of the results of his DNA test.

Rini told the officers that he had seen a story about Timmothy on ABC’s 20/20 and lied about his identity because he wanted to get away from his own family. “When questioned further, Rini stated that he wished he had a father like Timmothy’s because if he went missing, his father would just keep drinking.”

Per the complaint, Rini had on two previous occasions portrayed himself to police as a juvenile sex trafficking victim.

“False reports like this one can be painful to the families of missing children and also divert law enforcement resources in order to investigate these untruthful claims,” Herb Stapleton of FBI Cincinnati said in a press conference Friday. “Law enforcement takes dishonest reports very seriously … and we caution that people making false claims can and will face criminal penalties.”

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