• Police vow to find out what happened to 6-year-old boy weeks after body found in creek


    GASTONIA, N.C. - Investigators want the public to know they are still committed to finding out what happened to 6-year-old Maddox Ritch, three weeks after finding his body in a Gaston County creek.

    The Gastonia Police Department updated the community on Thursday, saying in a Facebook post that they are waiting on autopsy results, which could take weeks or even months.

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    The chief said the department will do everything possible to learn what happened in Maddox's final moments.

    The case has tugged at the heartstrings of the Gastonia community and the nation.

    Maddox's father said the boy ran too far ahead of him at Rankin Lake Park and disappeared. After nearly a week of desperate, nonstop searches and prayers, the boy's body was found in Long Creek, about a mile away from the park.

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