Kidnapping Investigation After Missing Firebaugh Man Located - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Kidnapping Investigation After Missing Firebaugh Man Located

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FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) -


The Fresno County Sheriff's Department now says they are handling the investigation as a kidnapping.

Gabriel Ryan Rodriquez was reported missing on Friday from Southwest Fresno County.

Rodriquez was found safe outside Kerman around 8:00 p.m. Wednesday night.

Further details are not being released pending the investigation.

Ryan Rodriquez, the Firebaugh man who had been missing for nearly a week, spent Wednesday night being interviewed by Fresno County Sheriff's detectives.

Detectives say the 32-year-old told them he was dropped off along Central Avenue, south of Kerman, Wednesday afternoon.

He walked nearly two miles for help.

Sgt. Joshua McCahill with the Fresno County Sheriff's Department says Rodriquez told them he knocked on a door and told the woman inside to call 911.

"It was the first residence he came to that he found would open the door for him. He asked for water and food and he was cold," says Sgt. McCahill. "He did not have appropriate clothing for the weather."

McCahill says the homeowner had given Rodriquez a blanket, and shortly after, deputies arrived.

Emergency responders also checked him out, and gave him the all clear.

He was then taken to Kerman Police Headquarters to be interviewed.

"You have a couple days period that he was missing. It is going to be a lengthy investigation. Interviews will take a while. We want to find out exactly what happened," says Sgt. McCahill.

He says that detectives are focusing on two sites in particular.

Rodriquez's family waited in the lobby of the police department.

Sources tell KMPH that Rodriquez briefly spoke with his family, but had yet to see them Wednesday night.

While they did not speak with reporters outside, his mother Cindy did release the following statement to KMPH News: "We love and appreciate our community. We are forever grateful to everyone, it's been overwhelming. We can't thank enough the Sheriff's department for all of their efforts and diligence, our family, friends, the media and complete strangers. We have been blessed! Thank you!"

McCahill added, "This is the best outcome that we could have had on this kind of case."

Rodriquez had last been seen the morning of Friday, December 6th in Huron on the job. He was filling up trucks with water.

A co-worker spotted him, but did not hear from him hours later and went to search for him.

That's when they found his work truck, but no sign of Rodriquez.

By that night, family and friends were out looking for him.

Tuesday morning, which was Ryan's 32nd birthday, his family announced a $20,000 reward in the case. By Wednesday, that amount was increased to $100,000.

Friends were not waiting still for answers, either.

They launched a social media campaign, and passed out flyers.

Some were out passing flyers at Christmas Tree Lane Wednesday night when they got the news he had been found.

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