Details of Disappearance
Daniel is missing with his brother, Noel
, and their father, Victorio
. They were last seen leaving their home in the Pearl Harbor area of Hawaii sometime before 1:00 a.m. on July 12, 2002.
Victorio was estranged from his wife, Ruby Santiago, Noel and Daniel's mother, in 2002. Their marriage had initially been happy, but the couple began fighting after Ruby enlisted in the United States Navy. Victorio did not believe she was spending enough time with their children. He eventually began to physically abuse her and she filed for a restraining order against him.
On July 12, Victorio traveled to Ruby's home at Radford in Pearl Harbor to attempt to convince her to drop the restraining order and reconcile with him, but instead they argued. Victorio allegedly assaulted Ruby, hitting her so hard she later had to seek medical attention. She ran away from him and locked herself in the bathroom, and he took their sons and left.
Victorio had previously taken his children for up to several hours at a time and always returned them safely, but because of his attack on Ruby the police began searching for him immediately. None of them have ever been heard from again.
The Santiagos may be traveling in Victorio's rental car, a light green four-door 2000 Daewoo Leganza with the license plate number JGS-405 and the temporary base number 4705. It disappeared with them and has never been located. It had been rented from Thrifty Rental Car. A photograph of a similar vehicle is posted with this case summary.
Victorio was a base chief in the United States Navy at the time he disappeared with his children; he had a good service record. He is originally from the Philippines and he, Daniel and Noel may be in that country. They may also still be in Honolulu. There have been no sightings of any of them since their disappearances and Victorio's family says they have no idea where he and the boys are.
Victorio left behind several notes lamenting the failure of his marriage and his separation from his children. He also wrote that he was suicidal and asked that his body be cremated after death, but there is no hard evidence that he took his own life. Investigators in the cases have stated, however, that they do not believe the Santiagos are in Hawaii alive.
Some agencies classify the Santiago children's cases as family abductions and Victorio as their abductor. However, the circumstances surrounding their disappearances are unclear. Noel, Daniel and Victorio's cases are all unsolved.