UPDATE: Abducted children doing well

Published 1:06 pm Monday, December 23, 2013

The two children who were allegedly abducted by James Harold Smith this past Wednesday, are said to be holding up well according to Hancock and Pearl River County Sheriff’s Departments.

The 8-year-old remains in stable condition at a hospital in Mobile, Ala., according to Pearl River County Sheriff David Allison. The 5-year-old has been released back to the care of his father, Allison said.

According to Hancock County Sheriff Ricky Adam additional information has become available about the boys’ female caretaker when the alleged kidnapping took place.

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When asked if there was a link between the caregiver, who is currently engaged to the boys’ father, and Smith, Adam replied, “My understanding is that the fiancée was involved romantically with the suspect.”

Also, when asked about reports of a shallow grave Adam replied that there was a hole, found by the parked vehicle of the suspect.

“There was a small hole and I don’t know if I would call it a grave,” said Adam. “No confirmation can be given that he (James Harold Smith) dug it, but it was found close to where his vehicle was parked. There had been a fallen tree with damp ground and we observed that the tree had been moved. That is where the hole was.”

Adam said he had no information on a Department of Health Services investigation on the adults closest to the children.

Community support for the children remains high. There was a candlelight vigil held in Poplarville on Saturday, Poplarville Alderwoman Shirley Wiltshire said.

“The vigil was a show of community support; many people have expressed concerns and are wanting to let the family know that they are in their prayers,” Wiltshire said.