The police officer pictured in a viral picture hugging Devonte Hart, the teenager who’s lacking after his household’s automobile careened off a California freeway Wednesday, has spoken out concerning the lethal crash and the impression the kindhearted boy made on him.

“The tragic information about Devonte and his household deeply saddens me,” Sgt. Bret Barnum of the Portland, Ore., police informed Inside Version. “The brief interaction with Devonte strengthened my love, ardour and responsibility in offering service to my group.”

Barnum was pictured comforting Devonte at a rally held November 2014 in response to the dearth of prices filed in opposition to the officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.

Devonte had earlier been carrying a “free hugs” signal, and the pair’s interplay turned the main focus of a viral picture.

Crews are actually looking for Devonte, together with 16-year-old Hannah Hart and 12-year-old Sierra Hart, after their family’s car plummeted off a cliff close to Mendocino. 

The lacking youngsters’s dad and mom, Jennifer and Sarah Hart, and their three different siblings had been confirmed to have died within the crash, the reason for which Mendocino Sheriff officers say they’re nonetheless working to find out.

“Now we have each indication to imagine that each one six youngsters had been in there, nevertheless solely three our bodies have been recovered,” Sheriff Tom Allman mentioned at a press convention Wednesday. “The perfect information that we are able to say is that three of those victims had been left with pals they usually weren’t even within the automobile on the time it went over the bay… Did we’ve six children within the automobile or did we’ve three children because it got here on Freeway 1? We don’t know the reply.”


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