A 5-year-old Avon Park, Florida boy previously reported missing from Florida has been found dead.
Chance Peterkin was last seen with his mother, Philetta Moransit, at Chance's grandfather's home on Thursday morning around 9am. The two were reported missing later that evening around 6 p.m.
Authorities found Moransit, 29, at the South Florida State College shortly after 8pm, naked and running around. Her son was not with her.
When questioned on his whereabouts, Moransit became uncooperative and the search for him began.
Late last night, Highlands County Sheriff Paul Blackman joined the search for Peterkin at Lake Lelia where clothing items from Moransit were found. Blackman took his own personal boat out onto the lake to search for the young boy and was the one to find his body, partially submerged, in some shrubbery on the lake's shoreline, just after midnight.
“We can’t say for sure what led to him getting in the water, how he got there, what happened after he got in there,” sheriff’s office spokesperson Scott Dressel told Fox10. “We went to great lengths last night to try and find Chance. We were hoping it would turn out right.”
Other mother's in the community have expressed their concern for Moransit's mental health. Area resident Marci Smith said that her granddaughter was a classmate of Peterkin's and described him as a "good kid" and that he would hug her when he saw her at the end of the school day. She joined in the search for the little boy also hoping for a better outcome just like the rest of us.
Moransit was arrested and charged with child neglect with great bodily harm and resisting arrest/obstruction. Additional charges could follow.