AMBER alert family seen headed onto Gulf of Mexico

11:24 AM, Apr 5, 2013   |    comments
  • Chase and Cole Hakken
  • Joshua Hakken, Sharyn Hakken
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Update 12:30 p.m. Friday

(WTSP) Tampa, Florida -- Hillsborough deputies say the father who abducted his two non-custodial children in Tampa was last seen taking his family into the Gulf of Mexico aboard a sailboat.

The information comes shortly after Joshua Hakken's pickup truck was discovered in a Madeira Beach parking garage. Investigators believe Hakken took his 4-year-old Cole and 2-year-old Chase onto a 25-foot sailboat, hours after abducting them from their grandmother's home early on Wednesday morning.

The Sheriff's Office says it is not clear what direction the boat went after leaving the Johns Pass area, nor do they know if the boat was still on the water during Thursday's strong storms.

Update 11:10 a.m. Friday

Authorities have released more information about two missing boys from Florida.

A truck that authorities had been looking for in the search for two young boys has been found in Florida.

10News' sister station in Tampa reports the GMC pickup was found in Madeira Beach.

There is still no word on the location of four-year-old Cole Hakken and his two-year-old brother Chase.  Both are believed to be with their father.

The alert was extended to Tennessee after authorities reported a possible sighting in Etowah.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation canceled the AMBER alert in the state after the truck was found in Florida.

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The TBI has issued a statewide AMBER Alert for two Florida brothers who may be in East Tennessee with their non-custodial parents.

Cole Hakken, 4, and Chase Hakken, 2, were kidnapped from their grandmother's home in Tampa on April 3.  The grandmother has custody of the brothers.

Authorities believe the boys were taken by their parents, Joshua Hakken and Sharyn Hakken. 

According to our sister station, WTSP in Tampa, Joshua Hakken lost custody of the boys the day before they were taken.  Investigators say he broke into the grandmother's home, tied her up, and took the boys.  They are not sure if Sharyn Hakken is a victim or part of the kidnapping plot.

TBI says the parents are believed to be armed and dangerous and may be traveling in a 2006 black GMC Sierra, with Florida license plate U95KT. 

The vehicle may have been spotted in the are of Highway 30 and Highway 411 in Etowah, Tennessee Wednesday night around 8 p.m.

If you have seen this vehicle or the children, you are urged to call the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation at 1-800-TBI-FIND or the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at 813-247-8200.


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