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Abducted 8-Year-Old Boy Found Safe in Sanger. Father Is Arrested.



A Fresno County sheriff's deputy arrested Luis Padilla, 31, in Sanger on Thursday, July 28, 2022. (GV Wire Composite/Paul Marshall)
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A missing 8-year-old Fresno area boy has been found and is reportedly in good condition after being taken from his grandmother’s home last week.

The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that deputies — acting on a tip — found the child’s father, Luis Rey Padilla, 31, and the child at a business in Sanger on Thursday.

The sheriff’s office says that Padilla refused to surrender and threw a table at the deputy before fleeing the business. The deputy caught and arrested him.

Padilla was booked into jail on three felony charges. The charges covered active warrants for past alleged crimes, including sexual battery. His bail totals $270,000.

Father Lost Custody Rights

Padilla allegedly abducted the child after losing custody rights. According to the sheriff’s office, Padilla later called the child’s mother to say he had the boy but refused to reveal their whereabouts.

The sheriff’s office then asked the public to report any sightings of Padilla.

Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email

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