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What really happened to Rudy Farias?

(NewsNation) — A story that started as an amazing tale of a Texas man found alive after being reported missing for eight years has quickly unraveled as it was revealed 25-year-old Rudy Farias was never missing and had been home the entire time.

Houston police are still investigating exactly what happened to Farias, but here is what we know about the case so far.

When did Rudy Farias supposedly disappear?

Rudy Farias was reported missing in 2015 when his mother, Janie Santana, said he never came home after walking their dogs, who returned to the house without Farias.

Farias has been reported as being both 17 and 18 at the time he vanished. Private investigator Brenda Paradise, who volunteered to search for him, said Santana provided conflicting information, resulting in confusion over his age.

How was Farias found?

Farias was found outside a Houston church with cuts and bruises. A good Samaritan called for help, which led to officials realizing his identity and declaring that he had been found safe after being missing for eight years.

Paradise told NewsNation she is suspicious of some of the details, including how Santana was able to arrive at the church before Farias’ identity was determined and why she turned away an ambulance at the scene.

Was Farias really missing for eight years?

No. In a press conference, Houston police confirmed Farias returned home the day after he was reported missing. However, his mother never told law enforcement or those who volunteered to help find Farias that he had returned home.

Why didn’t anyone realize Farias was home?

Neighbors and friends interacted with Farias, but Santana insisted that he was her nephew, not her supposedly missing son.

Farias even had contact with patrol officers in Houston, but authorities said he and Santana used false names and dates of birth when interacting with law enforcement.

Was Farias held captive by his mother?

Houston-area activist Quanell X told media that Farias had been drugged and held captive by his mother during the previous eight years. Houston police would not confirm that account.

A family member described Santana as manipulative and always looking to get money. Santana continually raised money to help find Farias, including raising funds for a trip to Mexico, where she claimed Farias was being held for ransom.

Is Farias a victim of sexual abuse?

Quanell X also claimed Farias said he had been sexually abused by his mother. Houston police would not confirm those allegations and said they do not comment on sexual assault cases as a matter of policy.

Does Farias suffer from mental illness?

When Santana reported Farias missing, she said he suffered with depression, anxiety and PTSD. However, Paradise said Santana had a history of falsely claiming Farias had illnesses, including asthma and cancer.

How did police miss Farias returning home?

It’s unclear whether police searched Santana’s home after Farias was reported missing and, if so, how they missed his return. Police did confirm that Farias had interacted with officers, along with his mother, but the two had given false information when identifying themselves.

Are police charging Farias or his mother with any crimes?

Houston police said the district attorney was not bringing any charges against Farias or Santana for false reports or for giving false names when speaking to police. They stressed the investigation is ongoing and new evidence could change that course of action.

What happens next?

Police are actively investigating what happened during the eight years Santana falsely claimed Farias was missing. They declined to say whether they viewed Farias as a victim or an accomplice, but said he had been referred to victim services and adult protective services.

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