The search for Jonathan Wright and the three missing children came to a happy end this past Sunday, December 26 in Rio Medina. Around 10:36 pm, the missing kids and suspect were located in a rural area of Medina County off CR 366. The case is a complicated one, and Sheriff Brown is relieved that all are safe and warm and hopes that officials can get to the bottom of this case.
“They were located in a field that units were searching in the Rio Medina area. The Wright subject and all the children are in the Sheriff’s Office custody. Everyone appears to be in good health,” a press release stated.
“We moved Christmas to the 26th,” Sheriff Randy Brown commented, “The children did not know Christmas had passed. What a gift it is to have these children safe and warm today.”
“The search began around the December 20, and we’ve been searching around the clock. We never stopped looking…all through Christmas,” Sheriff Brown said. “Some of those nights were very cold. It was hard to go home when it was 39 degrees and climb into a warm bed knowing those kids were still out there. We are all so relieved. I got home at 6 am this morning and I could finally sleep. It’s an amazing feeling to know they are safe, happy, and warm. They got new clothes, new pajamas. They are going to have a really nice Christmas here in Medina County today. We even have Santa and Mrs. Claus coming, we have a tree, we have gifts, and snacks too.”
“Yesterday was a good day for a lot of people, because there have been multiple agencies searching for this family. There was a lot of hugging out there in the brush, high fives, and tears of joy,” Sheriff Brown said.
Assisting on the night of the rescue were Texas Game Wardens, US Marshalls, TDC with K-9 units, and nearly all of the Medina County deputies, and a DPS helicopter.
“There was probably 45 of us out there on the ground at one point,” Sheriff Brown stated.
“The family has been out there for over 3 weeks, sleeping on the ground, living off the land….A few days ago, the mother of the children was spotted walking along the road to a store in the County with two older children. The kids were taken to a safe place and so was the mother, until we can get to the bottom of this. She is a victim of circumstances. She is worried about her babies. “
“In our search, we found a note left by the father, for the mother, and we really amped up our efforts at that point,” Sheriff Brown said.
“They are tough little kids. I have never met more polite sweet little kids,” Sheriff Brown said. “They all got up and made their beds this morning on their own.”
“I do not yet know all the details of the case and charges that against this man in North Carolina. I can tell he is very concerned about his kids. He quit eating 2 weeks ago, and gave everything he had left, to his kids.”
“After being arrested, charged, and getting out on bond in North Carolina, he went on the run with his family and became a wanted fugitive. But I have only heard one side of the story. I do not know the facts,” Sheriff Brown stated. “All I can tell you is that he is in custody now, and the mother and kids are safe and warm.”
“How they ended up in Medina County was just luck. They took a wrong turn, hit a deer, etc….. The suspect claims that he has had some bad run-ins with law enforcement elsewhere, and after talking to him, he stated that he thanks God he ended up in Medina County.”
The suspect, Jonathan Wright, faces several counts of EXPLOITATION OF CHILD/ELDERLY/DISABLED filed in Iredell County District Court. Wright will be extradited to North Carolina.
In a most recent press release, the Medina County Sheriff’s office stated, “THANK YOU TO ALL THE OUTPOURING OF PRAYERS, OFFERS OF GIFTS FOR THE CHILDREN, AND PRAISE FROM THE COMMUNITY AND SURROUNDING AREAS. PLANS ARE BEING PREPARED TO REUNITE THE CHILDREN WITH THEIR MOTHER AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.”