Man backs grandparents in 1994 abduction case; Monday statement possible


Michael Landers told reporters who came to his Todd County home he's considering making a public statement Monday about his alleged abduction by his grandparents 19 years ago.

Landers, a 24-year-old employee of a Long Prairie auto parts store, was thrust into a national spotlight last week when authorities discovered he is the former Richard Landers. Police say a custody dispute prompted his grandparents to abduct Landers from the Indiana town where he lived when he was five. The grandparents changed his name - and their own - when they relocated to Minnesota. They avoided detection for nearly two decades, while Landers grew up, found work, and got married.

Authorities at the federal level and in both Minnesota and Indiana are investigating and considering charges. But in a post on KARE-11's Facebook page, Landers defended his grandparents and cautioned against jumping to conclusions about the case. "My 'grandparents' were in the right. I don't care what anyone else thinks," he wrote.

Meanwhile, his mother - through her attorney - is disputing claims that she was homeless and unable to care for Landers when he was abducted.

His father says he wants to meet his son again. Richard Wayne Landers, Sr., told the Associated Press he loves his son but doesn't know how to reach him and can't afford to travel to Minnesota.

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