Walnut High Student-Athlete, 14, Who Disappeared After Classes Found Safe: Parents

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A 14-year-old student-athlete who disappeared after classes ended Wednesday at Walnut High School was found safe Thursday evening, according to the boy's parents.

Kayne Doughty Jr., 14, is seen in a photo provided by his family.

Kayne Doughty Jr., 14, is seen in a photo provided by his family.

The search for Kayne Doughty Jr.'s was initiated after the boy's parents reported him missing Wednesday evening.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said Thursday that investigators believed the boy was a runaway. Later that evening, the boy's parents told authorities that he had been located at a Burger King in Whittier.

A member of the Walnut High's cross-country and soccer teams, he may have gone for a run on a popular trail about a mile and a half from the campus, according to his aunt, Shirley Bortnick. The trail is located near the intersection of Meadow Pass Road and North Lemon Avenue (map).

Authorities with K-9 units were joined in the area by Kayne's friends and relatives, who passed out flyers with his image to drivers and passersby.

Although the dogs detected a "credible scent" at the location, it "did not lead to any credible whereabouts," said sheriff's Capt. Jeff Scroggin.

"We don't suspect any foul play at this time," the captain added. "We were … looking in this area just to make sure he wasn't injured during a run or something, walking through this area."

Latina Doughty, the mother of the missing West Covina resident, said he had told her that he planned to attend a track team meeting after school.

However, after the teenager texted her about 4:20 p.m., she went to the campus and he was not there. He was reported missing about an hour later. The parents discovered that no meeting had been scheduled.

Asked about the discrepancy in what her son had told her, Latina Doughty said: "I don't know. None of it adds up."

"Because we're a loving family and he's a good boy. He's a good person," she said tearfully. "I want to tell him I love him."

A relative initially said the disappearance was reported after the student did not appear at a track meet.

"There was no reason for him to run away," said his father, Kayne Doughty, speaking at the foot of the trail where a flyer with his son's photo was posted. "We let him know: We love you more than anything in the world. … This is not like him."

The younger Kayne’s lunch box was found in a creek in the area where he was believed to have gone running, and the last known signal from his cellphone originated near the trail, Bortnick told KTLA.

She said that when officers forced open the teenager’s locker at Walnut High, his street clothes were inside but his running shoes were not.

A joint investigation into Kayne’s disappearance was being conducted by West Covina police and officials from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Walnut/Diamond Bar station, said Lt. Dennis Patton of the West Covina Police Department.

KTLA's Kennedy Ryan contributed to this story.

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