The man knew Pitzen's middle name, James, and gave the accurate date of his birth, and Pitzen's aunt said he answered questions about things only family members would know.
The teenager told police that he was Timmothy and that he had escaped two kidnappers. According to a police dispatch report, the boy told police he was born October 18, 2004.
The boy told police he was staying with the alleged kidnappers in a Red Roof Inn, but he didn't know where it was located.
The two went on a three-day road trip stopping at Brookfield Zoo and water parks in Gurnee and Wisconsin Dells.
Reve Walsh and John Walsh speak during The National Center For Missing And Exploited Children, the Fraternal Order of the Police and the Justice Department's 16th Annual Congressional Breakfast at The Liaison Capitol Hill Hotel in Washington on May 18, 2011. One had a spiderweb tattoo on his neck, and the other had a snake tattoo on his arm, the report said.
Authorities said she killed herself and left a note saying Pitzen was safe and being cared for by someone who loved him.
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Police in the Cincinnati suburb of Sharonville said the teenager calling himself Timmothy reported that he had escaped from two kidnappers he described as men with bodybuilder-type physiques.
She said: "We just know a 14-year-old boy was found and went to the police", Mrs Anderson said.
"There have been so many tips and sightings and whatnot, and you try not to panic or be overly excited", said Timmothy's grandmother, Alana Anderson.
A manhunt for Timmothy stretched through Illinois, Wisconsin, and Iowa.
"Well, he's not here", Timmothy's teacher told Pitzen that afternoon, he later told MyStateline in 2017. The note ended with a chilling line: "you'll never find him".
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Her body was found in a motel room and there was no sign of Timmothy.
Every nearby town with a Red Roof Inn received an all-points bulletin describing the case, and workers at numerous chain's area locations said they had been questioned or asked for guest lists by local police.
Pitzen was reported missing May 12, 2011 when he was 6 years old.
Newport police say a neighbor spotted him and noticed he didn't belong in the neighborhood.
"To be clear, law enforcement has not and will not forget Timmothy, and we hope to one day reunite him with his family", an Federal Bureau of Investigation spokesman said in a statement to WCPO in Cincinnati.
Following news of a potential family reunion, a relative said they were not getting their hopes up given the disappointment of previous claims.
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"He told me he had been kidnapped he just really wanted to get home he lived in IL that's what he told me and he just was passed around to people that he didn't know", she said. He also said he had been kept at a Red Roof Inn and his captors had been driving a "newer model Ford SUV", according to a police report reviewed by ABC7.