SPARWOOD, B.C. - The father of missing three-year-old Kienan Hebert is holding out hope that his son will soon be back at home in Sparwood, B.C., safe and sound.
Paul Hebert says Kienan is a "great kid" who's always happy, and remains confident he'll be returned unharmed.
The boy, who is the subject of an Amber Alert, was last seen when his family put him to bed Tuesday evening at his home in the southeastern B.C. community, about 260 kilometres southwest of Calgary.
He's described by police as a red-haired Caucasian boy who was last seen wearing a blue pair of Scooby Doo boxer shorts.
Police are also looking for Randall Hopley, 46, who is of no relation to Hebert, and a brown 1987 Toyota Camry with the licence plate 098RAL. Police warn the public not to approach the vehicle.
Hebert is urging Hopley to come forward and tell police what he knows about the missing boy.
"Everyone's on hand, the professionals are doing what they can do, and we just have faith that Kienan will be coming back home and safe," Paul Hebert said today.
"He's a great kid; he's super happy all the time. If you see him, you'll think he's a cute little button. He's just a happy kid."
Searchers are scouring the town and surrounding woods of the Elk Valley, which lies in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains near the Alberta-B.C. boundary.
"Nothing has been ruled out but certainly we are considering foul play of course in this matter, but again we remain hopeful and optimistic in thoughts with the family that we're going to have a positive outcome to this effort so far in locating the child unharmed and well," said RCMP Cpl. Dan Moskaluk.
Moskaluk said the boy was reported missing at about 9 a.m. Wednesday morning.
Search-and-rescue officials then went into action and a police dog unit and RCMP helicopter were called in to conduct a search of the ground, he added.
Meantime, members of the RCMP's Southeast District Major Crime Unit, Cranbrook RCMP and the local Elk Valley detachment conducted another investigation, examining the scene of the disappearance to determine what happened to Hebert, said Moskaluk.
"There's a history that Kienan does sleepwalk, but in past incidents, he's never exited the house. Other than that, there's not much else (to explain his disappearance)."
Moskaluk said officials decided to look at issuing an Amber Alert around 5:30 p.m.
He said he couldn't answer why investigators identified Hopley as a person of interest.
"I don't know what the connection is ... I just get apprised as to OK, yeah, we're going to be able to go this route."
However, Moskaluk did say Hopley is currently on probation with conditions and is residing in the Sparwood area.
Moskaluk said Hopley should speak to investigators once he becomes aware police are looking for him.
He also said the ground search for the boy will continue.
Court records show multiple convictions for crimes in Sparwood for a man named Randall Peter Hopley, born in 1965.
This past June, he was sentenced to two months in jail and two months of probation after he was convicted of assault. The assault occurred in April of this year in Sparwood, court records indicate.
He was also convicted in 2006 for a break-and-enter in Sparwood, for which he received a conditional sentence of nine months.
In 2003, he received a one-year conditional sentence for theft under $5,000, and in 2002 he was handed a three-month conditional sentence after he was convicted of break-and-enter.
Police are also looking for Randall Peter Hopley
Descriptors: He has a birthmark along his hairline