Police arrested Julie Gardiner, 35, at about 10:30 p.m. Monday in the Silver Bow Homes complex on a misdemeanor charge of obstructing a peace officer while they searched for a missing 2-year-old boy.

The child, Legend Ryan White, was found unharmed at about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday in the 1600 block of Schley. Butte-Silver Bow County Undersheriff George Skuletich said the boy had been well taken care of.

Police issued a missing and endangered person advisory for White Monday evening. The boy had been missing since Sunday afternoon. The advisory said the boy was believed to be with Gardiner, who might be under the influence of drugs. Skuletich said White’s father had asked Gardiner to keep the boy Sunday afternoon.

But Skuletich said Tuesday that police have not filed a drug charge against Gardiner “at this time.”

Police visited Gardiner’s home Monday evening. She did not have the child and refused to cooperate, which led to her arrest, Skuletich said. 

Based on a tip, officers searched three other residences for the boy, finding him in the third house. 

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Nat'l Resources / General Reporter

Environmental and natural resources reporter for the Montana Standard.

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