Dad Tells Son His Mother Abandoned Him, Boy Discovers He Was Abducted 13 Years Later

Dayna Remus
Mar 21, 2022
02:29 P.M.
Share this pen

To all those who have children, having any of them disappear is a complete nightmare. One boy only discovered that he was kidnapped over a decade later, but what would he do with this information?


At only 5 years old in 2002, Julian Hernandez disappeared from Birmingham, Alabama, at the hands of his father, Bobby Hernandez – or, as he became known, Jonathan Mangina.

This dad was supposed to be taking his son to pre-school when instead, he fled to Cleveland with the boy, making sure to assign them both new identities.

[Left] Julian Hernandez as a child; [Right] An age progression picture of Julian Hernandez of what he might look like as an adult. | Source: twitter.com/CBS12

[Left] Julian Hernandez as a child; [Right] An age progression picture of Julian Hernandez of what he might look like as an adult. | Source: twitter.com/CBS12



The mother was so devastated and depressed by the loss of her son that it led her to an incredibly dark place. Remembering what she went through, Gloria Allred said:

"During my darkest moments, I considered suicide…I wanted to die."

However, while she felt hopeless, all was not lost. Thirteen years later, her son was in a different state, putting the pieces of the puzzles together and hopefully finding his way home.



Julian did not recall the incident; he was utterly unaware that he was kidnapped and listed as a missing person.

However, he did remember his father asking him if he would still love him had he done something terrible. Julian always said yes.

The now-teenager only realized the terrible truth when applying for university scholarships. According to a possible Reddit post he made at the time, his dad couldn't give him the relevant details because of the fake identification.



The Reddit poster then explained that his father confessed to abducting him when he was between 3 and 4 years old.

Beyond that, the overwhelmed individual said, he has now found out that he is on a missing persons' database.

Everything sped up as the police were informed by what is believed to have been a school counselor. Now, it was time for the father to face the music, and the kidnapper was arrested in November 2015.

Judge Cassandra Collier-Williams. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland

Judge Cassandra Collier-Williams. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland



In court in 2016, the prosecution dug into Bobby. He sobbed and begged for forgiveness during the proceedings. Cuyahoga County Prosecutor, Tim McGinty, did not show pity, claiming that the father convinced his son that he was:

"...abandoned by an unloving mother, when in fact the opposite was true."'

He proposed that the sentence should not be lenient as it led the young boy to live a lie for almost a decade. The lawyer also claimed that it robbed Julian of any emotional and typical mother-son bond growing up.

Bobby Hernandez in court. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland

Bobby Hernandez in court. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland



Ralph DeFranco, appointed to Bobby, asserted that the father did a great job raising his son and that it shows through the teen's achievements. DeFranco stated:

"I just meant he couldn't have done any more. The young man is a senior; he's a straight-A student who played sports; he was planning to go to college."

What many find surprising is that the now 19-year-old teenager himself agreed with this statement, forgiving his father and asking the judge not to put his dad behind bars.

Bobby Hernandez in court. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland

Bobby Hernandez in court. | Source: Youtube.com/News 5 Cleveland


Despite all these pleas, Bobby was sentenced to four years confinement. After this, he would face another half a decade of release under supervision.


Of course, the mother and his entire family were ecstatic to reunite with Julian.

In 2015, it was reported that he spent Thanksgiving with his mom in Alabama – just one day out of the many years of lost moments and memories between the two.



Missing out on all these beautiful experiences with his family was one massive aspect of grief that a then 15-year-old Shawn Hornbeck spoke about concerning his kidnapping in 2002.

Hornbeck was kidnapped at 11 years old. His family did everything they could to find him. But, strangely enough, the young man was rescued when police searched for another child who Michael J. Devlin had abducted.


In 2007, the 15-year-old said he would spend his days mostly sleeping, watching television, and playing video games. He was allowed to ride his bike outside and have friends – in broad daylight.

These cases didn't happen behind closed doors, as many would assume. Instead, these crimes were so evident that no one could truly see them, making these criminal activities genuinely terrifying.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255. Other international suicide helplines can be found at befrienders.org.

Please fill in your e-mail so we can share with you our top stories!
By subscribing, you agree to our Privacy Policy

news.AmoMama.com does not support or promote any kind of violence, self-harm, or abusive behavior. We raise awareness about these issues to help potential victims seek professional counseling and prevent anyone from getting hurt. news.AmoMama.com speaks out against the above mentioned and news.AmoMama.com advocates for a healthy discussion about the instances of violence, abuse, sexual misconduct, animal cruelty, abuse etc. that benefits the victims. We also encourage everyone to report any crime incident they witness as soon as possible.

Related posts

Twins Send Dad to Nursing Home, Learn He Left Inheritance to Janitor Who Is Their Carbon Copy – Story of the Day

February 13, 2022

Mom Searches for Abducted Son for 15 Years, Accidentally Stumbles upon His Old Photo on Facebook

March 29, 2022

After Dad's Death, Man Learns a Note Was Found near His Body – Mother Hid This Fact for 19 Years

April 12, 2022

Poor Girl Sells Family Heirloom for Grandma’s Operation, Sees It on Her Doorstep Days Later — Story of the Day

February 22, 2022

14-Year-Old Boy Approaches His Poor Single Father and Says, 'Dad, I Found Mom' – Story of the Day

February 07, 2022

Homeless Man Who Left His Sister 38 Years Ago Returns to Her with an Old Box from Their Father – Story of the Day

April 07, 2022

Woman Divorces Husband of 36 Years after Their Only Son Finds Out He Has a Brother – Story of the Day

April 10, 2022

Stepson Mocked by Adoptive Parents & Their Children Finds Letters They Hid from Him – Story of the Day

March 12, 2022

At Wife's Funeral, Widower Meets His Stepdaughter's Twin He Never Knew Existed — Story of the Day

February 02, 2022

Railway Station Announcer Adopts Lost Kid, 2 Months Later Finds Former Wife’s Ring in Boy’s Pocket – Story of the Day

May 20, 2022

Devoted Dad-Of-Three Finds Out He's Always Been Infertile, Decides to Take a DNA Test

May 10, 2022

5-Year-Old Boy Witnesses Kidnapping of His Younger Brother, Decides to Find Him No Matter the Cost

April 15, 2022

Girl Sees Her Carbon Copy in School and Tells Parents, Later Takes a DNA Test

February 10, 2022

Blind Girl Begs Man to Help Find Her Dad, Minutes Later He Realizes It's His Own Father — Story of the Day

May 02, 2022