A crying Florida woman begged in front of dozens of TV cameras on Christmas day for the return of her missing 5-month-old son. "I don't even know if he's dead or alive," she said, sobbing. Only problem was -- the whole thing was a hoax.
Cops say 22-year-old Meagan McCormic made the whole thing up -- including the existence of the child. Police say McCormic was trying to get her ex-boyfriend back when she created the abduction story, triggering a statewide search for the little boy.
Prosecutors have charged the young woman with filing a false police report. If convicted she could have to pay for the cost of the search.
A spokesman for Miami PD said McCormic made up the story by pretending her ex-boyfriend John Buchness had fathered a child he did not know about. When Buchness showed up and asked to see the child, cops say McCormic told him the boy was missing.
In an "emotional" press conference, McCormic told reporters her son's name was Riley Buchness and that she had left him with a nanny named Camille who had a French accent and a gap between her teeth. The poor guy was at the press conference, fully under the impression that he had a son who was missing. "I don't understand," the 26-year-old Buchness, told reporters that day, choking back tears. "It's Christmas."
Cops all over Florida started looking for the boy and nanny, using the descriptions McCormic supplied, police said. She even gave police a picture of the boy, but Friday they said they believe she had downloaded the photo from the Internet.
Authorities have called off their search.