A 3-year-old boy was found sleeping on a porch. Police say his parents are missing and their car was burned
This site is currently unavailable to visitors from the European Economic Area while we work to ensure your data is protected in accordance with applicable EU laws.

Buffalo police said Thursday they have not identified two bodies found inside a charred vehicle on Monday, but said the rental car was driven from Florida to Buffalo by the missing parents of a 3-year-old boy found sleeping alone on a West Side porch earlier that day.

Breaking: the boy's grandmother tells me these are his parents. The family hasn't had contact with them since 6p Sunday. They are 24-year-old Nicole Mersed and 31-year-old Migel Valentin. Their son, Noelvin was found sleeping on a stranger's porch Monday morning. @WKBWpic.twitter.com/2Eiq3wUNAk

The missing parents have been identified as Nicole Marie Merced Plaud, 24, and Miguel Anthony Valentin-Colon, 31.

The search continued through Tuesday, when police were able to locate the boys grandmother, Zenaida Colin, who provided his parents names. She identified them as Nicole Mersed, 24, and Miguel Valentin, 31, a couple from Orlando, Fla.

Also missing was Dhamyl Mirella Roman-Audiffred, 29, who was identified by police as their friend, according to Capt. Jeffrey Rinaldo.

Police: Video shows 2 people running away from burning vehicle with Central Florida 3-year-old

“Potentially all three of them are still alive. We have not identified the people in the vehicle,” he said.

The mysterious incident started when Lois Augsburger found the toddler, identified only by his first name, Noelvin, sleeping alone in a cardboard box that she initially put out for stray cats.

“This is still a missing persons investigation … running alongside with now a homicide investigation,” Rinaldo said.

Police announced on Tuesday that a toddler, identified as 3-year-old Noelvin from Longwood, was found in a box on the porch of a Buffalo home. Police said they were searching for the toddler's parents, 24-year-old Nicole Merced Plaud and 31-year-old Miguel Valentin-Colon, and their family friend, 29-year-old Dhamyl Mirella Roman-Audiffred. The three of them were in Buffalo together, as they made a road trip up there with Noelvin. They were believed to have arrived on Sunday.

Police search for two persons of interest in abandoned toddler, missing parents case

Police said the vehicle arrived at its destination at 2:51 a.m. They released two surveillance videos that showed two people – whom they called people of interest – approaching the white Chrysler Pacifica at 2:54 a.m. Monday, minutes after it was driven into a desolate area off the 100 block of Tonawanda Street.

When the boy crawled out of the box, "he was saying the car was burning up, the car was burning up. That's all he kept saying," Lois Augusburger said. A vehicle in Buffalo was discovered burned up with the remains of two people inside. They are still trying to identify the remains but authorities have positively identified the vehicle as the same one the parents of the child rented and drove to New York.

In a second video, the two people are seen leaving the area near the car at about 3:01 a.m. Monday with the couples toddler, Noelvin. They are carrying what appear to be gas cans.

Rinaldo also showed surveillance video during the news conference. It was recorded in the early morning hours of September 16th and showed two persons of interests. The surveillance video first shows a person walking in the direction of where the car was found. A second person of interest is seen putting a some cover on his head while another person is seen walking the toddler away.

Rinaldo pointed out that the surveillance video was shot with no light, but used infrared technology to produce artificial light.

“The vehicle was badly, badly damaged from the fire, almost to the point that we cannot tell what type of vehicle it is or the contents of the vehicle,” Buffalo Police Captain Jeff Rinaldo said. “The fire definitely burned extremely long, extremely hot and extinguished itself, which left little remnants of the vehicle.”

NY Cardboard Box Boy Case is Now a Homicide Investigation as Police Release Video of Two Men Fleeing Burning Car

“Therefore, it can distort colors of skin or clothing colors. So Im asking people not to draw any assumptions as to ethnicity or exactly what the people were wearing,” he said.

This site is currently unavailable to visitors from the European Economic Area while we work to ensure your data is protected in accordance with applicable EU laws.

“It gives us a timeline as to when the fire started. It gives us a timeline of how the child was not inside the vehicle. It gives us now two people who were present when this car started on fire, so its extremely important to us,” Rinaldo said.

He also told the press conference that the two individuals seen fleeing the scene did not match the descriptions of any of the three missing; however he added that because the area was in complete darkness and the CCTV used infra-red, the ethnicity or clothing color of the "persons of interest" should not be concluded from the footage.

He said it is possible that there may be other surveillance footage of the white Pacifica traveling in the citys Riverside neighborhood, particularly in the areas of Tonawanda and Niagara streets.

Rinaldo asked those with surveillance systems in the area to review their footage dating back to 2:30 a.m. Monday, to see if they may have captured the vehicle on tape.

"My plea right now is to please help me get him home. I have people in my home now ready to accommodate them. So, my home is ready. its been ready," she continued. "Im thankful for Buffalo, New York for taking care of him for a few days, but I think its time for us to head home."

Rinaldo asked anyone with information about the people seen approaching the car in the videos to contact police by calling or texting the departments tip line, at 847-2255.

The missing Florida residents and the toddler were last seen Saturday near Orlando, Fla., and are believed to have arrived in Buffalo late Sunday night, according to police.

3-year-old boy found sleeping on strangers porch, parents missing

Noelvin was found at about 8 a.m. Monday on Potomac Avenue, in good health. The toddler is in the custody of Erie County Child Protective Services.

Buffalo Police Confirm Connection Between Boy, Remains Found

“We should be thankful the little boy is alive and safe,” Rinaldo said, but added that police are determined to arrest whomever caused the deaths of the people in the car.

The remains were found in the burned-out vehicle Monday behind Black Rock Mini Storage on Tonawanda Street.

Video shows persons of interest running from torched vehicle…

“We have positively confirmed that there were two bodies inside of that vehicle. We have not yet been able to identify whose remains those are,” Rinaldo said.

“I cant stress enough the vehicle was completely incinerated and the contents were nothing but ashes,” he said.

Posted in Buffalo