Investigation Focuses on Kidnappers - 8 News NOW

Investigation Focuses on Kidnappers

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Forty-nine-year-old Jose Lopez-Buelna was arrested on Friday as police were serving search warrants in the case. Forty-nine-year-old Jose Lopez-Buelna was arrested on Friday as police were serving search warrants in the case.
Six-year-old Cole Puffinburger has been found alive and is safe in policy custody. Six-year-old Cole Puffinburger has been found alive and is safe in policy custody.
Police are still looking Jesus Gastelum, a Mexican national. Police believe Gastelum is in Las Vegas or Southern California. Police are still looking Jesus Gastelum, a Mexican national. Police believe Gastelum is in Las Vegas or Southern California.

Metro says it has a "person of interest" in custody in the Cole Puffinburger kidnapping case. Forty-eight-year-old Jose Lopez-Buelna was arrested on Friday as police were serving search warrants in the case. Police only released details of the arrest today.

In addition, authorities aren't disclosing what information they think Cole's grandfather and a woman in California might have in relationship to the kidnapping case. But a federal magistrate ruled Monday that Clemens Fred Tinnemeyer and Terri Leavy can be held as material witnesses for a "reasonable amount of time" in the investigation of the abduction of the boy.

Cole was found Saturday night. He was standing on the side of the road when he was discovered by a CAT bus driver. He told police that he was dropped off about 10:20 p.m. in the parking lot of a nearby church. There was no one around when Cole's kidnappers dropped him off -- just bus driver Julio Diaz with his curiosity and generosity.

"It got my attention that a boy like that would be at that time, night, wandering alone," he said.

Diaz drives a para-transit bus for the RTC. He goes from house to house picking up passengers who cannot make it to the bus stop because of a physical disability. Diaz happened to drive up Oakey at the right time.

Cole asked the driver if he could take him home, "He looked OK. I think it was good that he was not shy to ask for help. I think he knew he came to the right person."

There is still some crime tape around the church parking lot. It's a very busy area during the day with a lot of activity. There are cars, children and a lot of people around the church. At night, it's a very different story. Although there are street lights, it is not as well lit. Cole told police he was not there long.

Captain Vincent Cannito says the first thing Cole did when he saw the first detective was hug his leg. Cannito will use information from the six-year-old to track down the kidnappers, but hopes that they will have enough evidence so Cole won't have to face them again in court.

"Certainly it would not be the first choice for us to have a six-year-old child dime out who it was that kidnapped him," he said.

Cannito says this was not a random act and police will arrest the people responsible. Police have named Jesus Gastelum as a person of interest in the kidnapping case. They are still looking for him.

Metro says at least two people broke into Cole's house last Wednesday and kidnapped him. Metro is also working with the federal authorities to unravel the drug network that started this whole ordeal.

The theory is that Cole's grandfather stole millions in drug money.

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