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6-year-old autistic boy Maddox Rich likely drowned, attacked by animal, autopsy finds

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Maddox Rich, a 6-year-old autistic boy who was found dead after a week-long search in September, probably died of drowning, according to autopsy results. The boy’s body also had numerous wounds to his upper neck, likely the result of an animal attack.

Maddox was last seen with his father and another adult at the Rankin Lake Park on September 22nd. 

Maddox, who was considered non-verbal, got too far ahead of his father during a walk and disappeared from view.

“We were walking on a track around the lake and he decided to take off from me. … I didn’t think nothing of it and he got a little too far away from me,” Ian Ritch told “Good Morning America” in an exclusive interview. “As soon as I got to the point where I couldn’t see him anymore, I started panicking. I couldn’t see him anywhere.”

Maddox’s body was found 6-days later.

There was no evidence of trauma or broken bones, according to the autopsy. The medical examiner says questions still need answered, such as how and where he entered the creek, how he died, and whether or not a crime was committed.

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