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Etan Patz Update: Suspect Pedro Hernandez indicted in 1979 death of NYC boy, lawyer says

Pedro Hernandez
CBS News
Pedro Hernandez
Pedro Hernandez
CBS News

(CBS/AP) NEW YORK - A lawyer for the suspect in the 1979 disappearance of 6-year-old New York City boy Etan Patz, says his client has been indicted on charges of murder and kidnapping.

Pictures: Decades later, new details in Etan Patz case

Attorney Harvey Fishbein said Pedro Hernandez, 51, is now being charged in the boy's disappearance. He was arrested this year and investigators say he confessed.

Etan's disappearance led to an intensive search and spawned a movement to publicize cases of missing children. His photo was among the first put on milk cartons, and his case turned May 25 into National Missing Children's Day.

Hernandez was a teenage stock clerk at a convenience store when Etan disappeared on his way to school. Police say Hernandez told investigators he lured the boy into the convenience store with the promise of a soda.

He allegedly said he led the child to the basement, choked him and left his body in a bag of trash about a block away.

Fishbein has described Hernandez as bipolar and schizophrenic, with a history of hallucinations. The diagnosis could become the basis of a psychiatric defense claiming that Hernandez agreed to speak to police without understanding his rights, and that the purported confession was a sick fantasy.

Complete coverage of the Etan Patz case on Crimesider