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Missing Timmothy Pitzen’s parents had discussed divorce before his mom was found dead by suicide

Timmothy Pitzen’s parents had been discussing divorce in the weeks before his mother was found dead by suicide with a note saying her son was ‘safe’.  

The six-year-old vanished from Aurora, Illinois on May 11, 2011 after his mom, Amy Fry-Pitzen, pulled him out of kindergarten and took him on a two-day road trip to the zoo and a water park, before killing herself at a motel.  

She left a note saying that her son was safe with people who would love and care for him and added: ‘You will never find him.’ 

Now her husband, and Timmothy’s father, James has spoken about the last time he saw the pair. He also discusses his marriage troubles with Amy in a new episode of the HLN Original Series Real Life Nightmare.

James told the documentary: ‘I found out she was talking to her ex husband and I said “you need to stop that, I’m not good with that this and you can make a decision whether you want to be with him or you want to be with me and Timmothy”.’    

Timmothy’s aunt, Kara Jacobs, said the family’s life had appeared ‘normal’ but added: that Amy, who had been married four times before, ‘was not happy about the prospect of another divorce’. 

Kara added: ‘That was definitely a worry and a concern of hers.’  

Timmothy vanished in 2011, after his mom, Amy Fry-Pitzen, committed suicide in a motel room and left a note saying the boy was safe but would never be found. Dad James is also pictured

James told the documentary: 'I found out she was talking to her ex husband and I said "you need to stop that, I'm not good with that this and you can make a decision whether you want to be with him or you want to be with me and Timmothy"'

James told the documentary: ‘I found out she was talking to her ex husband and I said “you need to stop that, I’m not good with that this and you can make a decision whether you want to be with him or you want to be with me and Timmothy”‘

James also details how he had insisted on dropping his son off at Greenman Elementary School before taking his wife to her place of work the day of their disappearance.

He told the documentary how his wife was suffering from vertigo but had wanted to take their son to school, adding: ‘I let Amy know that, she was upset, she said “don’t you trust me”. I said I just want to make sure everybody gets there safe.’

James said: ‘I dropped Timmothy off at school, and Timmothy goes, ‘Love you, Dad.’ I go, ‘Love you, buddy. I’ll pick you up later,’. I drop her off, give her a kiss. I watch her buzz into the building, and that’s the last time I see her.’   

Timmothy, who would now be 15-years-old, then disappeared without a trace after his mom appeared at the school telling educators that she needed to remove her son from class because of a ‘family emergency’.

Security footage from the school shows the moment she led her son away.  

When James returned to the school to pick Timmothy up he was told Amy withdrew him from class hours earlier. 

For more than a day, he found no sign of Timmothy or Amy, until eventually she called James and his brother on May 12, telling them ‘Timmothy is fine. Timmothy belongs to me. Timmothy and I will be fine. Timmothy is safe’.  

Timmothy's aunt, Kara Jacobs, said the family's life had appeared 'normal' but added: 'She [Amy] was not happy about the prospect of another divorce'

Timmothy’s aunt, Kara Jacobs, said the family’s life had appeared ‘normal’ but added: ‘She [Amy] was not happy about the prospect of another divorce’

James has spoken about the last time he saw his wife and young son in 2011

James has spoken about the last time he saw his wife and young son in 2011 

The last CCTV images of Amy and Timmothy alive together were captured on May 12 as they checked out from the Kalahari Resort, in Wisconsin Dells.

The following day, Amy was spotted alone on CCTV 120 miles away in a supermarket near Rockford, having purchased a pen, paper and some envelopes. 

On May 14 she was found dead in her Rockford Inn motel room having committed suicide by slashing her wrists. 

 A note found next to her body said that Timmothy was safe, and in the care of others, but added: ‘You’ll never find him’.

James tells the show: ‘They read the note to me. She said Timmothy was with somebody who loves him and will take care of him — and that we’ll never find him.’ 

Timmothy’s identification card was found inside the room, but workers at the motel said Amy had checked-in alone. 

Speaking to his son, James added: ‘Timmothy, I love you. I miss you. I want us to be together. We have a lot of catching up to do. I just can’t wait ’til you come home.’ 

For more than a day, he found no sign of Timmothy or Amy, until eventually she called James and his brother on May 12, telling them 'Timmothy is fine. Timmothy belongs to me. Timmothy and I will be fine. Timmothy is safe'

For more than a day, he found no sign of Timmothy or Amy, until eventually she called James and his brother on May 12, telling them ‘Timmothy is fine. Timmothy belongs to me. Timmothy and I will be fine. Timmothy is safe’

The last CCTV images of Amy and Timmothy alive together were captured on May 12 as they checked out from the Kalahari Resort, in Wisconsin Dells

The last CCTV images of Amy and Timmothy alive together were captured on May 12 as they checked out from the Kalahari Resort, in Wisconsin Dells

James also details how he had insisted on dropping his son off at Greenman Elementary School before taking his wife to her place of work the day of their disappearance

James also details how he had insisted on dropping his son off at Greenman Elementary School before taking his wife to her place of work the day of their disappearance

Police say they’ve investigated several false leads since Timmothy’s disappearance in 2011. 

Brian Michael Rini approached a woman on a residential street in Kentucky and told her he was the missing boy

Brian Michael Rini approached a woman on a residential street in Kentucky and told her he was the missing boy

One potential breakthrough came in 2014, when a woman said she saw a boy matching his description at her yard-sale. Police were never able to confirm the sighting. 

No trace of Timmothy had been found since, but his surviving family members were cruelly given renewed hope on April 3, 2019, when Brian Michael Rini approached a woman on a residential street in Kentucky and told her he was the missing boy.  

Timmothy’s now family say they do not harbor ‘hard feelings anymore’ after Rini, 24, pretended to be the missing boy. 

His aunt, Kara Jacobs, told the show: ‘We recognize that this is an individual who needs help, and we hope that he gets the help that he needs. 

‘Even though what he put us through was very difficult and challenging, at the very least, it got people talking about Tim again.’

But dad James added: ‘I was really upset. All the hope was gone. It was a really depressed time.’ 

Speaking to his son, James added: 'Timmothy, I love you. I miss you. I want us to be together. We have a lot of catching up to do. I just can't wait 'til you come home'

Speaking to his son, James added: ‘Timmothy, I love you. I miss you. I want us to be together. We have a lot of catching up to do. I just can’t wait ’til you come home’

Rini, 24, was in January sentenced to two years in jail after pleading guilty to aggravated identity theft in a deal with prosecutors.  

According to authorities, Rini, who knew the boy’s full name and date of birth, described to officers how he had just escaped from two captors at a nearby motel who had been sexually assaulting him and trafficking him for nearly eight years.

Federal investigators became suspicious of Rini when he refused to be fingerprinted. Their apprehensions were later confirmed when a court-ordered DNA test proved that Rini was impersonating Pitzen.

The Timmothy Pitzen episode re-airs on HLN, this Sunday, December 13 at 11pm ET/PT. 


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