Family grieving after 9-year-old boy found dead in Atoka County

Published: May. 27, 2020 at 5:03 PM CDT
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The family of a 9-year-old boy found dead in Atoka County Monday is grieving.

9-year-old Tristan Weeden went missing around 7:30 p.m. Saturday when he walked away from his house in Wardville, in the northern part of Atoka county.

Search crews recovered his body Monday in a pond about 150 yards east from where he went missing.

"He was my best friend," Tristan's dad Jered Weeden said.

Jered said Tristan was always a happy kid.

"His favorite color was red and he wanted to make sure everybody knew his favorite color was red, he loved to watch movies, and play outside with his friends," Jered said

OHP troopers said they are investigating Tristan's death as a drowning, but are not ruling anything out until the Medical Examiner's report comes back.

Jered said his parents have had custody of Tristan since he was seven, and Jered had not seen him since November.

"I was under the impression that my son was at an inpatient hospital in Oklahoma City, that's what we'd been told and we hadn't heard otherwise, so I didn't even know he was at my parents' house," Jered said.

Jered said he did not know Tristan was missing until more than 12 hours after it was reported when police came to his house looking for his missing child.

"He was put outside for a time out and he was just gone is what they're saying," Jered said.

He said he has heard a few versions of the story, but he said his son had been known to wander off in the past.

"So I didn't know that he'd been doing that and they had to search for him before, and then to have somebody put a child that's known to run off outside alone like that, I mean why would anybody do that?" Jered said.

Troopers said Tristan's guardians are not facing charges at this time, but DHS will conduct their own investigation.

"He was always happy, he was always smiling, he didn't meet anybody he didn't think he should be friends with, he had the biggest heart," Jered said.

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