Runaway teen who sparked nationwide alarm “doesn’t like” his mother

The “best possible end” to a very public search for a missing teen in Braga ended on a sour note yesterday as the boy told police he had runaway from home because his mother beat him.

Thirteen-year-old Sérgio Magalhães is actually reported to have said the unthinkable: “I don’t like my mother.”

Anyone watching his homecoming on television on Thursday will have seen the less than gracious way the child left the company of police who found him after a freezing night and most of the following day camped out in scrubland 6km from home.

Now the case is being referred to the Commission for the Protection of Children and Young People – the same commission that was meant to be monitoring the life of Portimão teenager Rodrigo Lapa, found brutally murdered, allegedly by his stepfather, on Wednesday.

A source close to Sérgio’s family has confirmed that Sérgio’s parents are due to be heard by the commission next Monday.

Searches for Sérgio began on Wednesday evening, and involved police with sniffer dogs, the parish council and scores of people resident in the rural community of Celorico de Basto.

The boy’s father has since thanked all concerned after the case hit the news headlines in the wake of publicity surrounding the murder of Rodrigo Lapa after he too had been reported missing by his mother.

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