A teen located by the NBC Action News Investigators denies ever saying a neighborhood handyman "bragged" about a $300 payday for kidnapping Baby Lisa Irwin.
"No," said the teen. "I haven’t seen him since like September 11 th.
In a story published Friday, an attorney for the Irwin family said he was trying to track a teen who supposedly claimed a neighborhood handyman told him he'd been paid to take the infant.
The NBC Action News Investigators found the 17-year-old as he was about to go to work as a dishwasher at a Kansas City restaurant.
In the restaurant parking lot he denied ever saying the handyman told him anything about events surrounding the Oct. 4th disappearance of Baby Lisa.
He acknowledged discussing the possibility the Irwin neighborhood handyman named Jersey could be involved.
"I told someone, I was like (expletive), Jersey was the kind of person where you could say here, here’s $300, take care of this baby, and he would have done it," he said. "That’s all I’ve said. I haven’t seen Jersey since weeks before all this happened actually."
The handyman could not be located for a couple weeks after the infant's disappearance.
Police have said he is not a suspect and is currently jailed on unrelated charges.
Kansas City attorney John Picerno responded to our e-mail inquiry saying, "I'm on vacation out of town."
Private investigator Bill Stanton said he had not spoken to the witness himself, and wasn't sure whether the Irwin legal team had interviewed the teen.
"Well, they might have, they may have," Stanton said. "I'm not sure, but then again. It's the press that makes the headlines."
"Until there's further investigation, I'm going to take him at his word," Stanton said. "I met his alleged girlfriend and she and her mother were giving this information. While it's interesting, it may be people who are over zealous."
Editor's note: Since the person NBC Action News interviewed is a minor, we are not sharing his name.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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