Minn. stowaway, 9, to remain in youth facility

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A judge decided Friday that a 9-year-old Minneapolis boy who hopped a flight to Las Vegas should remain in a facility outside his home for now.

The decision was reached at a Hennepin County child protective services hearing. Lawyers and social workers met behind closed doors with Judge Joseph Klein for more than an hour, then came to court already having agreed to keep the child where he is, the Star Tribune (http://strib.mn/1l2onVr) reported.

The boy eluded airport security on Oct. 3 and stowed away on a flight from Minneapolis to Las Vegas. He was returned to Minneapolis.

Authorities said at Friday's brief hearing that the boy has struggled with his behavior but is making progress.

Klein stressed to the boy's parents that family therapy is a critical part of the court requirement. Both of his parents were in court. They are allowed to visit and call their son.

The boy was not in court, but a lawyer and a legally appointed guardian were there to represent his interests.

The boy has been in the youth facility for the past two months, and the judge ordered all conditions to continue. A trial to determine the boy's permanent custody is set for Feb. 7

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Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com