UPDATE (1/21/14 1:21PM): So sad to report this but according to NBC News, it's been confirmed, that the remains found along the shore in College Point, Queens belongs to missing teen Avonte Oquendo...our thoughts are with his family...
A skull was also found by the scene with two teeth left in the mouth and through DNA testing, turned out to belong to Oquendo.
Authorities believe Avonte died by drowning after falling into the river when he was reportedly trying to run away from a dog:
via NY Post:
Missing autistic teen Avonte Oquendo was seen running from a dog at a nearby park right after he slipped out of his Queens school, and he likely fell into the East River in his panic, law-enforcement sources told The Post Friday.
The drowning scenario is the top theory for Avonte’s disappearance and was further substantiated when body parts and clothing believed to be Avonte’s were found 11 miles up-river from the park, on a beach in northern Queens.
“He had a huge fear of dogs and was seen running from one” in Hunter’s Point South Park, a short walk from his school, the source told The Post of the mute, timid 14-year-old.
“He may have run in a panic and fallen into the water,” of which he was also terrified, the source said.
There is no confirmation yet but body parts were found along the shore of College Point in Queens and Avonte Oquendo’s family have been notified.
(via PIX 11):
A human arm and legs that were discovered along the shore of College Point, Queens, are being investigated as a possible development in the search for Avonte Oquendo, a missing boy with autism who disappeared in October, a police source tells PIX11 News.
At 7:16 p.m. Thursday, near Powell Cove Boulevard and Endeavor Place, an arm was discovered by a child, who took a picture of the body part and showed it to his mother back home, who then called police. Police then launched a search of the area, turning up two legs.
The feet had a pair of size 5 1/2 Air Jordans, a police source told PIX11 News. Those are the kind of shoes Oquendo was wearing when he disappeared from a school in Long Island City on October 4. The park where the body parts washed up is 11 miles from Oquendo’s school.
Police said the body parts are being taken to the Queens County Morgue and the medical examiner will determine the cause of death.
They’re still investigating and checking the crime scene.