SARASOTA -- The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office is investigating the disappearance of a baby boy from North Port and is asking the public for information on his parents' activities before they left the state.
On Oct. 4, the maternal grandmother of 9-week-old Chance Walsh contacted the sheriff's office because she had not seen him since Sept. 9. She and the boy's paternal grandmother made a number of unsuccessful attempts to check on Chance's welfare because his parents, Kristen Bury, 32, and Joseph Walsh, 36, are longtime drug users, according to the sheriff's office.
Deputies said the family contacted law enforcement after the pair told them they were in a vehicle crash in South Carolina, but told relatives several different stories, including saying Chance was unharmed, he died in the crash and they gave him to a woman at a hotel in Georgia.
According to a release, detectives confirmed with South Carolina law enforcement there was no baby in the vehicle at the time of the crash and no room for a car seat. The sheriff's office has charged Walsh and Bury with child neglect.
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They are being held on $150,000 bond apiece in Jasper County, S.C., and awaiting extradition to Sarasota County.
In addition to working with the FBI, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children is issuing a bulletin seeking information on Chance or his parents to assist with this investigation, deputies said.
Anyone with information on this case can call the Criminal Investigations Section at 941-861-4074 or remain anonymous by contacting Crime Stoppers of Sarasota County, 941-366-TIPS (8477), or go to sarasotacrimestoppers.com.