Calgary police chief questions whether reward would help O’Brien Amber Alert

Calgary’s police chief questions whether a reward would help the investigation into the disappearance of a five-year-old boy and his grandparents.

CALGARY — Calgary’s police chief questions whether a reward would help the investigation into the disappearance of a five-year-old boy and his grandparents.

Nathan O’Brien was reported missing Monday when his mother went to pick him up after a sleepover at the grandparents’ home.

Alvin Likens, 66, his wife Kathy, 53, and Nathan weren’t there and an Amber Alert was issued by police.

Nathan’s father, Rod O’Brien, has told local media the family will be offering a reward and a news conference was scheduled with investigators later Wednesday.

But Chief Rick Hansen said in cases like this, a reward can just cause more work for police because people could step forward with bogus tips that must be checked out.

“If you do use a reward, if there is a lot of money that is created for a reward, frequently it increases the workload because you have got all kinds of people then who step forward with information that may not even be related to it,” he said in an interview with radio station CHQR.

“You have to, at that point in time, filter any and all information that you get. And if you have a significant reward, it does add to the workload, not only for us, but for the Crown prosecutors and everybody else.”

Hansen said if people have information about a case they will usually call the Crime Stoppers phone tip line.

There was an outpouring of sympathy and support for the family on Rod O’Brien’s Facebook page. Many were offering help.

“My heart and soul goes out to the safe return of Nathan!! Praying everything turns perfectly,” posted one person.

“Praying, praying, praying!” wrote another.

Investigators have said that based on things they found in the grandparents’ home, they don’t believe the three left voluntarily.

An estate sale was held in the home over the weekend and there have been reports that the grandparents talked about downsizing and moving to Mexico, but police said they haven’t been able to determine whether the sale is relevant to the case.

Police have said there are no custody issues with the family — the boy’s parents are married and he is their biological son. Police have also said they have no history with the family.

The grandparents’ vehicles are accounted for, as are those of other family members.

Forensic investigators have been scouring the property for clues.

Nathan O’Brien is described as three feet tall, with curly blonde hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing peach-coloured shorts and a blue-striped hoodie.

Alvin Liknes is six feet tall, 200 pounds with grey and blond hair and was wearing black shorts. Alvin has a distinctive walk. Kathryn Liknes is five-foot-three-inches tall, 120 pounds with reddish-brown hair and green eyes.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A worker is constructing the frame of a new building at Clearview Ridge, near 30th Avenue and 67th Street in Red Deer. (Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff).
Alberta wages fell more than any other province in Canada in 2020

Alberta compensation fell by six per cent last year

People board and leave at the Century Park light-rail transit station in Edmonton on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Racism is a real problem:’ Growing number of attacks against Black Muslim women

‘Racism is a real problem:’ Growing number of attacks against Black Muslim women

Alberta Health Services declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Revera Aspen Ridge on Feb. 1. (Photo by Advocate staff)
Two COVID deaths linked to Revera seniors residence in Red Deer

35 active COVID cases at seniors residence

Red Deer musician Lorry Boschman has written a song about love in the time of COVID-19. Proceeds from his single, Romance during a Pandemic, will be donated to the local United Way. (Contributed photo).
Local musician records a song about love in the time of COVID-19 — for charity

Lorry Boschman will donate some proceeds to the United Way

Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre can accommodate up to 20 patients requiring a ventilator, says Alberta Health Services.  File photo by Advocate staff
Opinion: UCP government reneging on Red Deer hospital funding

Another year, another Alberta budget and another blow to central Albertans. Budget… Continue reading

Seattle Storm guards Sue Bird, right, and Jordin Canada pose for photos Wednesday, March 3, 2021, on the roof of the Space Needle in Seattle after they raised a flag with the team's new logo on it. Bird re-signed with the Storm earlier in the week. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Sue Bird staying busy with 20th Seattle season on horizon

Sue Bird staying busy with 20th Seattle season on horizon

Lille players celebrate after Jonathan David scored his side's second goal during the French League One soccer match between Lille and Marseille at the Stade Pierre Mauroy stadium in Villeneuve-d'Ascq, France, Wednesday, March 3, 2021. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)
David scores 2 as Lille wins to stay two points clear of PSG

David scores 2 as Lille wins to stay two points clear of PSG

Canada defender Shelina Zadorsky, right, passes the ball in front of Argentina forward Sole Jaimes (9) during the second half of a SheBelieves Cup women's soccer match, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, in Orlando, Fla. Alphonso Davies and Shelina Zadorsky have been named Canada Soccer’s players of the month for February. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Phelan M. Ebenhack
Davies, Zadorsky named Canada Soccer’s players of the month for February

Davies, Zadorsky named Canada Soccer’s players of the month for February

Manchester United's Fred, left, and Crystal Palace's Jordan Ayew challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Crystal Palace and Manchester United at Selhurst Park stadium in London, England, Wednesday, March 3, 2021. (Mike Hewitt/Pool via AP)
Grueling season starting to catch up with Man U, Leicester

Grueling season starting to catch up with Man U, Leicester

Gary Sanchez goes deep, Yankees hit three home runs to beat Blue Jays 4-1

Gary Sanchez goes deep, Yankees hit three home runs to beat Blue Jays 4-1

Toronto Raptors guard Norman Powell (24) dunks as Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Detroit, Friday, Jan. 31, 2020. The undermanned Toronto Raptors, down five players and six members of their coaching staff due to health and safety protocols, are scheduled to host the Detroit Pistons in their first action since last Friday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Carlos Osorio
Powell, Lowry do their bit but undermanned Raptors beaten handily by the Pistons

Powell, Lowry do their bit but undermanned Raptors beaten handily by the Pistons

Canada's Ghislaine Landry, left, runs past France players during the Women's Rugby Sevens World Cup in San Francisco, Friday, July 20, 2018. The HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, grounded last year by the pandemic, will return for the women in May. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Jeff Chiu
World Rugby unveils condensed 2021 sevens schedule with Vancouver a question-mark

World Rugby unveils condensed 2021 sevens schedule with Vancouver a question-mark

Most Read