View Full Version : What if my child goes missing?? What to/not to do.

09-19-2008, 10:13 PM
From Mark Klaas webpage: (http://www.klaaskids.org/pg-mc-whattodo.htm)


Immediately call (911) and all other local law enforcement agencies: Do not stop after you have called 911. Depending on your circumstances, contact your local Police Department, County Sheriff, State Police or Highway Patrol, law enforcement in surrounding jurisdictions and the Border Patrol if applicable. Remember, there is no 24 or 48-hour waiting period. If you meet resistance demand to speak to the watch commander and insist that they take a report and enter the information into the National Crime Information Computer (NCIC) at once.

Notify the Federal Bureau of Investigation: If you suspect a predatory abduction. The FBI will initiate a kidnapping investigation involving a missing child of tender years, defined as a child twelve years or younger, even though there is no known interstate aspect. The FBI will monitor other kidnapping situations when there is no evidence of interstate travel, and it offers assistance from various entities including the FBI Laboratory. They have written protocols, dedicated agents, unsurpassed resources and vast experience in this specialized investigative field.

Log onto or refer the responding law enforcement agency to www.beyondmissing.com (http://www.beyondmissing.com/): This revolutionary Website allows registered law enforcement agencies to immediately create and distribute missing flyers to other targeted law enforcement agencies using powerful Internet tools. Parents can also create, download and print flyers for duplication, but not database or electronically distribute missing flyers. There is no cost for either service.

Notify all local media assignment desks: The sooner television and radio begin notifying the community that a child has been kidnapped, the better the chances of recovery. It’s as simple as that.

Notify your local non-profit Child Locator Service (http://www.klaaskids.org/pg-mc-childlocators.htm): They can provide an array of services pertinent to your situation. Child Locator Services exist to assist in the recovery of missing children. Do not overlook this important resource.

If you believe that your child has been kidnapped: Contact the National Center For Missing and Exploited Children (http://www.ncmec.org/) at 1-800-THE-LOST.

If you believe that your child has been kidnapped: Contact Team H.O.P.E. (http://www.teamhope.org/), a parent support network for families with missing children. Team H.O.P.E. volunteer parents have experienced the agony of searching for their own children. They provide practical and emotional support for parents whose children are victims of predatory kidnapping, parental abduction, international abduction, adult missing and runaways and can be reached at 1-800-306-6311.

If you believe that your child has run away: Contact the National Runaway Switchboard (http://www.1800runaway.org/) www.1800runaway.org (http://www.1800runaway.org/) at 1-800-786 2929.

Keep your home phone attended by someone your child knows: Install Caller ID if you do not already have that service and record conversations. This may be the only way your child knows how to reach you.

Take care to preserve your physical and emotional welfare: Friends, neighbors and even total strangers will be working toward a successful resolution, but you must remember to eat and sleep regularly. This will be the most daunting and difficult journey that you will ever take and you will need sobriety, presence of mind and good judgment if it is to be successful. Seek emotional and psychological support from your church, a social service agency or even a professional counselor with experience in your type of situation. Remember that you alone are leading the battle for the return of your missing child.

Remember - Never Give Up Hope! As long as you believe, hope remains eternal.

09-19-2008, 10:15 PM
There is so much good advice out there...here is another list..

CHECK LIST: What to do if a loved one goes missing ...

* First and foremost, do not panic. Be kind to yourself, nothing will be
gained by beating yourself up.
* When you have sufficient reason to believe your loved one is missing,
keep a record (name, time, phone number) of everyone to whom you speak ...
you may need to phone them later to call-off the search and thank them.
* Contact friends or family of the mp and ask if they have any knowledge of
the missing person's whereabouts. Ask them to phone around and widen the search, don't
take on everything yourself. Have someone stay by the phone. Try to keep the
house phone free for the missing person to contact you. Use your mobile phone or another
line to receive incoming reports.
* Report person missing to the Police/Gardai/.
* If the missing person is vulnerable i.e., under 18, over 65, suffering from physical or
mental illness, depressed, disappearance out of character - report the
disappearance to local police/Gardai immediately your suspicions are
aroused. REMEMBER ... it's never too soon.
* If the person is on life-saving medication and had not taken the medicine
with them, contact police/gardai, the local radio stations and newspapers
and ask for help. REMEMBER ... it's never too soon.
* Internet... place photo and appeal on websites.
They will need details like DOB, address, description of mp and police
contact details if reported to the police/gardai. They will advise you of
the options open to you and recommend what to do, and equally as important,
what NOT to do.
* Collect your thoughts ... make a note of clothes missing person was wearing when last
seen, any belongings they took (passport, credit cards, bank books,
suitcase, cash etc.).
* Check phone ... to whom did they last speak? Request itemised bill from
phone company.
* Bank account ... are they withdrawing money? Where?
* Bus check in rural areas especially ... did missing person board the bus?
* If they go missing in town or shopping centres ... check cameras.
* Collect recent photos of missing person (useful for any appeals police or others may
undertake). Check with relatives and friends for better
quality close-up poses (head and shoulders), if you don't have any yourself.
Any photo is better than none, but the more up-to-date, the better.
* Make it a routine to take at least one head and shoulders photograph of
your loved ones each year.
* Distribute posters
* Ask local newspapers, radio and television for help.
* Ask police/gardai to keep in touch and if they don't, phone them.

What NOT to do if a loved one goes missing
* Do not panic.
* Do not delay in searching. Time can be of the essence.
* Do not keep their disappearance a secret, the more you tell, the more
people you have looking on your behalf and speedier the results might be.
* Do not tidy up their bedroom until the police/gardai have seen it, mess or
* Do not dust before fingerprints have been taken.
* Don't be put off ... you know your own ... follow your intuition.
* Do not wait - if missing person is vulnerable, notify the police as soon as
you think something is wrong.
* Do not put your own telephone numbers or address on posters or
advertisements, to avoid hoaxes - use the police/gardai numbers.
* Do not give up, keep appealing and searching. Remember, people want to
help. Try and keep the name and photo in the public eye.


10-17-2008, 08:35 PM

10-20-2008, 12:54 PM
These are excellent tips. I hope I NEVER have to use them, but I feel reassured knowing that they are there if anything ever happened to my child.

11-13-2008, 11:47 AM
I would also suggest reading David Van Noman's primer for the families of missing persons.
What every family must know

By Deputy Coroner Investigator David Van Norman, Unidentified Persons Coordinator



When a loved one is reported missing there is every right to expect that some large law enforcement investigative machine trundles into action; police fan out in all directions, and the search is on for the missing person. I am sorry to say that nothing can be further from the truth!

In the real world missing-person detectives are overwhelmed by the shear volume of missing persons cases and a plethora of other investigative duties, including investigating rapes, assaults, burglaries, etc. Most detectives receive no special training in missing persons investigation, which is unfortunate in light of the fact that the missing person assignment is like no other type of law enforcement duty – requiring an entirely different kind of focus and skill set.

This is the reality. We can cry about it, or we understand what to do about it! Until federal and state legislation catches up and mandates every law enforcement agency in the country investigate missing person cases properly, it is up to you to make the right choices and ensure that what must be done, is done correctly.

09-03-2009, 01:35 PM
bumpie de bump.

When your child is missing: A Family Survival Guide (http://www.ojjdp.gov/PUBS/childismissing/ch1ck.html)

Checklist: What You Should Do When Your Child Is First Missing
Chapter 1: The Search
Your Role in the Search: The First 48 Hours
The Role of Law Enforcement in the Search
The Role of Volunteers in the Search
After the First 48 Hours: The Long-Term Search
The Role of Private Detectives and Psychics in the Long-Term Search
Key Points
Checklist: Gathering Evidence in the First 48 Hours
Chapter 2: Law Enforcement
Your Partnership With Law Enforcement
Key Points
Checklist: Working With Law Enforcement
Chapter 3: The Media
Media Involvement: The First 48 Hours
Media Involvement: After the First 48 Hours
Key Points
Checklist: Conducting Interviews With the Media
Chapter 4: Photo and Flier Distribution
Photo and Flier Distribution: The First 48 Hours
Photo and Flier Distribution: After the First 48 Hours
Key Points
Checklist: Distributing Fliers
Chapter 5: Volunteers
Making the Best Use of Volunteers
Using Untrained Volunteers in the Search Effort
Using Trained Volunteers in the Search Effort
Key Points
Checklist: Working With Volunteer Searchers
Chapter 6: Rewards and Donations
Monetary Rewards
Monetary Donations
Key Points
Checklist: Selecting a Tipline for Leads
Chapter 7: Personal and Family Considerations
Regaining Your Emotional and Physical Strength
Mentally Preparing for the Long Term
Helping Your Children To Regain Their Physical and Emotional Strength
Helping Extended Family Members To Regain Their Physical and Emotional Strength
Key Points
Checklist: Figuring Out How To Pay Your Bills
Recommended Readings
Additional Resources
About the Parent Authors
Contact Organizations
Missing and Exploited Children's Issues -- Online
This document was prepared by Fox Valley Technical College under cooperative agreement number 95-MC-CX-K002 from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), U.S. Department of Justice.
God has a plan to help bring justice to the world -- and his plan is us.
Gary Haugen
Source: Founder, International

02-05-2012, 04:46 PM
USA.gov Missing Children (http://www.usa.gov/Citizen/Topics/Missing-Children.shtml)
Find AMBER Alerts, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and more.
•A Family Survival Guide When Your Child is Missing
•AMBER Alerts by State
•Child Protection Publications