LOS ANGELES (KTLA) -- A nonverbal boy who was left alone at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles has been reunited with a family member, and a woman believed to be his biological mother has been arrested, authorities said Thursday afternoon.
A woman who was last seen with the boy had not been found, police initially indicated. But LAPD Capt. Marc Reina said on Twitter that an arrest had been made in the case.
An LAPD spokesman soon explained that a woman believed to be the boy’s biological mother “showed up at a Union Station” just before 2 p.m. and was taken into custody. Her name was not released.
“There was a connection made between her and the child – enough of a connection for the officers to believe that she is the biological mother and take her into custody,” the spokesman said.
Detectives are interviewing her and will determine what charges she’ll be booked on, but she could face allegations of child abandonment or child neglect. They’re also trying to figure out if the woman has legal custody of the child, the LAPD spokesman said.
The boy, believed to be between 6 and 8 years old, was fed and given clothes at the station after he was found Wednesday. But police were initially unable to get any information from him, Sgt. Raymond Flores with the Los Angeles Police Department’s transit services told KTLA.
Authorities initially believed the boy was deaf and possibly had autism, but an American Sign Language interpreter determined he could hear.
He was reunited with a person described only as a family member who is not the woman detained by police.
Adrienne Garrett, the woman who found the boy, was with her colleague at Union Station about 6:30 p.m. when they first saw the child with a woman they suspected was his mother. She said the woman eventually “wandered off” from the boy; when Garrett eventually located her, she left the area.
“Unfortunately, she just literally walked straight through the doors and didn’t even acknowledge it at all,” Garrett said about the woman.
She added that she notified authorities, who fed the boy, and she stuck around for a while hoping the woman would come back. The child was eventually placed in the custody of child protective services Wednesday night, Flores said.
“He was very full of life, like a normal kid would be,” Garrett said. “He didn’t necessarily seem to notice that he was alone, maybe it’s because we were all here with him.”
Garrett described the woman as being African-American, between 30 and 40, with pulled-back hair, wearing a hat and sunglasses. Flores said she was wearing yoga pants.
Police are going through surveillance video hoping to shed light on what happened at the station.
KTLA’s Melissa Pamer contributed to this article.