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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    TN Laws/Alerts in Place

    Please post here any current laws/alerts in place relating to the Missing/UID.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    37-10-201. Short title – Definitions
    (a) This part shall be referred to as the "Tennessee Missing Children Recovery Act."
    (b) As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:
    (1) "Child" means any person under twenty-one (21) years of age;
    (2) "Missing child" means a child who is believed to have been removed by force, persuasion, trick, enticement, false pretense, has voluntarily left the custody of such child's parent without permission or is absent for unexplained or unknown reasons; and
    (3) "Parent" means a natural or adoptive parent, guardian, or person or organization standing in a loco parentis position by virtue of an order of a court.

    37-10-202. Initial missing child report -- Statement of identification information
    Whenever the parent knows, learns or believes that a child under the parent's charge and care is missing, such parent shall report the child to a police or sheriff's office, Tennessee bureau of investigation or any law enforcement officer and make a statement to the agency of all available facts which will aid in the recognition, identification or location and recovery of the child.

    37-10-203. Formal missing child report -- Reports to law enforcement agencies
    Every law enforcement officer receiving information from a parent or any source which it deems creditable shall prepare a formal missing child report and transmit a copy thereof immediately to the Tennessee bureau of investigation by computer pursuant to title 38, chapter 10, or in the absence of a computer terminal, by mail. A law enforcement agency reporting a missing child is further authorized to report the missing child to any other law enforcement agency. The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall distribute the report among all law enforcement agencies in Tennessee or to any interstate and federal agencies which it may believe would be of assistance in locating the missing child.

    37-10-204. Reports to juvenile court judge -- Missing child order
    (a) The law enforcement agency taking and/or making a report of a missing child shall submit its report, together with any additional data reduced to writing in the form of statements or notes, to a judge of the juvenile court within a reasonable time.
    (b) The judge shall review the report and information and determine whether or not there is probable cause to believe the child is a missing child.
    (c) (1) If a decision of "missing child" is made, a "missing child" order shall be issued and delivered to any lawful officer or the Tennessee bureau of investigation authorizing the bureau or any officer holding the order, a true copy thereof or possessing knowledge of the existence thereof, to investigate the circumstances relating to the missing child in compliance with existing constitutional, statutory and case law and upon identification or location of the missing child to take custody of the child, using legal process when necessary, for immediate delivery to a judge of any juvenile or other court of record for appropriate orders and disposition pursuant to law.
    (2) If probable cause for issuance of a "missing child" order is not found, the judge shall so order and the missing child report should be cancelled by the bureau which shall give notice of the cancellation to all appropriate law enforcement agencies.

    37-10-205. Forms -- File of missing children -- Monthly reports of missing children -- Dissemination of information
    The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall specify a uniform form for the missing child report and data, so that the same may be transmitted by computer or mail. The bureau shall also establish, maintain and manage a file of "missing children" and collect any available relevant data concerning the missing child and disseminate the same by computer, mail or any other reliable communication device to any law enforcement agency. The bureau shall publish a monthly report of all missing children and recovery of children and distribute the same to all full-time law enforcement agencies in the state, the general assembly and executive branches of government, to the news media, and to every school superintendent in the state, who shall then distribute the report to the principal of every school within such superintendent's school system. Whenever possible, this report shall contain the photographs of the missing children. The bureau is authorized to transmit information on missing children to the federal bureau of investigation or any other state maintaining missing children files and may conform its reports to any federal agency reports so as to facilitate the automated exchange of information.

    37-10-206. Child fingerprint cards
    Parents are authorized to have official fingerprint cards made for their children by taking their children to any law enforcement office or by having the same made by any private or public agency upon signing an authorization therefor. The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall deliver appropriate blank child fingerprint cards to law enforcement offices or private agencies upon request without cost. Whenever any child is fingerprinted as authorized in this section, the card shall be delivered to the Tennessee bureau of investigation or the parent as specified by the parent in the authorization form. The bureau shall not be required to accept any nonstandard child fingerprint card.

    37-10-207. Children's fingerprint card file
    The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall maintain a separate fingerprint card file for "Children" which shall consist of the "children" fingerprint cards submitted to it pursuant to § 37-10-206, together with any latent prints believed to be children's prints which have been submitted to it for purposes of identifying missing children. Once each year the bureau shall remove and return to the parent or destroy all fingerprint cards from the children's fingerprint file for children who have become eighteen (18) years of age, unless the child has been reported missing or the child requests in writing that such child's fingerprint remain in the file. Also, the bureau shall destroy any child's fingerprint card upon written request of the parent. The bureau is also authorized to receive "children" fingerprint cards or copies thereof from the federal bureau of investigation when the prints may have been sent directly to the bureau without having also been sent to the Tennessee bureau of investigation as herein provided. The bureau shall not file any of the children's fingerprints authorized herein in any other fingerprint card file. The bureau shall only search the children's fingerprint card file for the purpose of trying to locate and/or identify children who have been reported as missing children, and the file shall never be searched for the purpose of identifying a child as having committed a crime unless the parent so requests in writing.

    37-10-209. Distribution of materials concerning missing children -- Solicitation of contributions
    (a) No organization shall solicit contributions for the purpose of distributing materials containing information relating to missing children unless it complies with all of the following requirements:
    (1) Such organization has been incorporated under title 48, chapters 51-68, or the nonprofit corporation law of another state prior to the time of the solicitation of contributions, or such organization is an unincorporated charitable association, trust, society, or other group; and
    (2) It has been exempt from federal income taxation under 26 U.S.C. § 501(a) and described in 26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3), 501(4), 501(8), 501(10) or 501(19) as now or hereafter amended, prior to the time of the solicitation of contributions.
    (b) No organization that solicits contributions for the purpose of distributing materials containing information relating to missing children shall expressly state or imply in any way that it is affiliated with, or is soliciting contributions on behalf of, an organization established to assist in the location of missing children without the express written consent of that organization.
    (c) Whoever violates subsection (a) or (b) is guilty of improper solicitation of contributions for missing children which shall be punishable as a Class A misdemeanor.
    (d) "Missing children" or "missing child" means a minor child who has run away from or who is otherwise missing from the home of, or the care, custody and control of, such child's parents, custodial parent, guardian, legal guardian, or other person having responsibility for the minor.
    (d) Nothing in this section shall be construed as exempting any person or organization from the requirements of the Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act, codified as title 48, chapter 101, part 5.

    38-6-116. Tennessee internet criminal information center
    (a) The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall, no later than January 1, 1998, create an office within the bureau to be known as the Tennessee internet criminal information center (TICIC). The purpose of such center is the development, maintenance and updating of an online database, toll-free hotline and such other means as are appropriate to provide easily accessible information to members of the public concerning persons of interest to the public safety and welfare.
    (b) Upon creation of the TICIC, the bureau shall compile and maintain databases consisting of a registry and associated information for the following groups of persons:
    (1) (A) The Out-of-State Parole and Probation Supervision Registry. This registry shall consist of at least the name and conviction offense of those persons who have been placed on probation or parole in another state but who are residing in Tennessee pursuant to the compact for out-of-state supervision, codified in title 40, chapter 28, part 4;
    (B) This registry shall also include a photograph of each probationer or parolee approved for residence in this state under the interstate compact after May 30, 1997;
    (2) (A) The Sexual Offense Registry. This registry shall consist of all public information regarding persons who are required to complete a TBI sexual offender registration/monitoring form pursuant to title 40, chapter 39;
    (B) This registry shall also include the registrant's photograph for persons registering pursuant to title 40, chapter 39, after May 30, 1997;
    (C) No later than January 1, 1999 this registry shall include the photograph of all persons who are registered pursuant to title 40, chapter 39;
    (3) The Tennessee Missing Children Registry. This registry shall consist of those children who have been placed by the bureau on the Tennessee Missing Children Registry; and
    (4) Any other registry, information or database that, in the opinion of the bureau, would be in the interest of the public safety or welfare.
    (d) When one (1) or more of the databases comprising the TICIC is complete and in an accessible format, the bureau shall place and maintain each of them on the TICIC's
    internet home page which shall be accessible through the state of Tennessee's internet home page.

    38-6-117. Missing children registry
    (a) The Tennessee bureau of investigation is authorized to create within the bureau a missing children registry. The registry shall contain pertinent information about, a picture of, and the current status of certain children in this state who have been reported as missing.
    (b) The bureau shall have the sole discretion to determine the number of missing children to be placed on the registry, the criteria for placing a child on the registry and the definition of "missing child."
    (c) When the missing children registry is complete and in an accessible format, but no later than January 1, 1998, the bureau shall place, maintain and update it on the state of Tennessee's internet home page.
    (e) When the Tennessee internet criminal information center is created within the bureau and becomes operational, the missing children registry shall become a part of such center.

    Tenn. Code Ann. § 4-51-134
    4-51-134. Participation in "Amber Alert"
    The Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation shall formulate and implement a plan, in cooperation with the Tennessee bureau of investigation, for the Tennessee lottery's participation in the state's AMBER ALERT program via on-line lottery ticket terminals and all other appropriate media and technology at the corporation's disposal.
    Last edited by imamaze; 01-20-2009 at 07:29 PM. Reason: added url's per capoly

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Tennessee Amber Alert Criteria

    An AMBER ALERT must be submitted by a law enforcement agency where the following conditions are met:

    * To activate an AMBER ALERT, there must be accurate information on at least one of the following:
    1) description of child
    2) description of suspect
    3) description of vehicle
    * The abducted child must be 17 years of age or younger
    * There must be a belief that the child is in imminent danger of bodily injury or death.


    Subscribe to receive Wireless Amber Alerts


    LA ALERTA AMBER debe ser sometida por la agencia del orden público en las siguientes circunstancias;

    Para activar LA ALERTA AMBER, debe haber información exacta en por lo menos uno de los siguientes.
    1) la descripción del niño
    2) la descripción del sospechoso
    3) la descripción del vehículo

    El niño secuestrado debe tener 17 años o menos

    Debe haber una creencia que el niño está en peligro inminente de herida o muerte.


    Inscribase para recibir gratuitamente alertas inalambricas Amber Alert

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    (Below are snips from MPD PDA. Complete PDA at link)

    I. CITY WATCH Mid-South Alert

    CITY WATCH/MID-SOUTH ALERT is a Memphis Police Department computerized messaging system that can be utilized to provide an outbound messaging service capable of sending both voice messages and email messages to multiple receivers with only one phone call. The system also has the capability to send a fax to multiple receivers with only one fax transmission. Currently, CITY WATCH/MID-SOUTH ALERT communicates with TV, radio and local print media.

    It is the mission of the Memphis Police Department to protect and serve its citizens. With this mission in mind, the department has instituted the CITY WATCH/MID-SOUTH ALERT Program.

    The purpose of this program is to establish procedures that will ensure our citizens are informed of newsworthy community events and to serve as a precursor to the AMBER Alert System. While the AMBER Alert System does not take into consideration runaways, missing children, throwaways, or endangered children, the CITY WATCH/MID-SOUTH ALERT will address these issues. The program will expand to other areas such as: missing adults, notable traffic situations, disasters, and other major incidents. At any time during a CITY WATCH/MID-SOUTH ALERT, a missing child incident could escalate into an AMBER Alert scenario. If that happens, the guidelines for the AMBER Alert Program will take precedence.

    1.In the case of an endangered missing, endangered runaway, endangered throwaway, child or endangered missing adult occurring between the hours of 0800 and 1600 the Commander or Assistant Commander of Investigative Services will authorize the activation of a City Watch, the Night Duty Lieutenant Colonel will be responsible for all other times. In “Other Events”, the scene Supervisor or commanding officer must notify the Communications Supervisor or City Watch Coordinator to activate the Mid-South Alert. (See Example A) The City Watch desk is staffed from 0800 hrs to 1600 hours Monday through Friday. For all other times, contact the Communications Supervisor (901-543-2711). The City Watch Phone Number is 901-545-2003. The City Watch office is located at 201 Poplar Avenue, Rm. 10-09. The voice segment of the City Watch Program should not be used between the hours of 2100 to 0800; this is for the benefit of citizens who work unusual hours.

    2.City Watch will be used in situations regarding endangered missing children, endangered runaway, and endangered throwaway children. (See attachment #1). The purpose is to provide rapid community notification through the Memphis area broadcasters (TV, Radio,and Print Media).

    3.The City Watch System will also be used to locate endangered missing adults. These adults may be lost due to extenuating circumstances that could result in life threatening situations, i.e. Alzheimer’s patients, endangered lost, or other threatening criteria that necessitate immediate community notification (see attachment #2).

    4.During regular business hours (0800-1600), the Missing Person Bureau will be responsible for all City Watch investigations.

    5.Between the hours of 1600-0800, Felony Response will be responsible for all missing person investigations. Felony Response will forward the case jacket and phone tip information to the Missing Person Bureau the following morning.

    6 Tips with information will be handled through Crime Stoppers (528-CASH).

    The bureau commanding officer will be responsible for ensuring that an adequate number of investigators staff the phone lines in Crime Stoppers.


    Endangered Runaway: A Child under the age of 14 who leaves his/her legal custodial caretakers without the authority to do so (children that flee State Custody are included in this category). (The command staff, on case-by-case bases will evaluate habitual runaways under the age of 14)

    Habitual Runaway: A child under the age of 17 who demonstrates a pattern of running away from home. The Missing Person Bureau must articulate this based on past behaviors and patterns.

    Endangered Throwaway: Children under the age of legal consent (14 years of age or younger) who are ordered to leave the custodial care of his/her caretakers (kicked out by the caretakers).

    Endangered Missing Child: A child 17 years old or younger (see attachment #1) who has disappeared with no sign of abduction and unusual circumstances are present which demand immediate and comprehensive attention. If the child is outside their zone of safety for their age or development stage, mentally incapacitated, depended upon prescribed medication, and the facts surrounding the disappearance would lead a police officer to conclude that the child is at risk.


    If a determination based on facts indicates that the missing child is missing due to circumstances other than abduction, the following will be the standard protocol:

    1 Memphis Police Department will respond to the location of occurrence, search the home and surrounding area immediately.

    2 A Field Supervisor will be summoned to the scene, contact his/her Lieutenant Colonel or the Night Duty Lieutenant Colonel and notify the Missing Persons Bureau/Felony Response. Additional resources will be secured if deemed necessary (PST's, Additional Patrol Officers, Air Support, Mounted Unit, K-9 Unit).

    3.MPD Missing Person offense report is to be taken immediately with no waiting period.

    4.Monday-Friday between 0800-1600 hours the Missing Person Bureau supervisor will contact the Commander/Assistant Commander of Investigative Services who will authorize a City Watch based on the facts of the case.

    5.The Night Duty Lieutenant Colonel will be responsible for making the decision during all other times.

    6.A City Watch will be transmitted on the missing child as soon as possible.

    7.The Investigator will forward the necessary paperwork to Communications Bureau (Station B) for entry of the child into NCIC.


    Law enforcement frequently faces situations where the person missing is an adult. If the adult is lost or disorientated due to an accident, illness, mentally incapacitated, or the person is depended upon prescribed medication but the facts surrounding the disappearance would lead a police officer to conclude that the person is at risk. Friends and relatives who frantically search for these individuals face a tremendous sense of urgency as well. The City Watch can adapt itself to meet the needs of lost adults .

    NOTE: This activation follows the guidelines listed in Section C (above) for missing children.

    Memphis Police Department Policy and Procedure for Criminally Abducted Children


    The Memphis Police Department considers the disappearance of a minor child to be an investigative priority; whether it is the result of unknown circumstances, a runaway incident, or a non-family abduction. In each of these incidents, based upon the specific case circumstances, department heads and supervisors will make decisions about the proper level of manpower and resources needed to bring the situation to a successful conclusion. While every missing child situation has the potential for harm, the non-family abduction is the one offense that likely will result in injury, sexual assault or death of the child.

    In situations where a child has been the victim of a non-family abduction, an aggressive law enforcement response is necessary. The response will be staffed adequately with manpower, resources, and follow a comprehensive investigative plan. The AMBER Alert will be a fundamental component of that plan.


    The purpose of the AMBER Alert is to establish procedures to be followed in the event of a CRIMINAL CHILD ABDUCTION. This document will outline the Memphis Police Department’s response in a manner that will provide the greatest opportunity for a swift and safe return of the child. It will also provide for the apprehension and subsequent prosecution of the suspects responsible for the abduction. The AMBER Alert will be issued only for abductions of children where there is specific information available on suspects or vehicles for broadcast.


    Although every AMBER Alert is unique to its community, there are certain criteriathat must be met before being activated. The Deputy Chief on duty must approve all Amber Alerts including other regional agencies in the West Tennessee area. If there is reason to believe the missing child/suspect is in the local area (150 miles of Memphis) AND the following criteria are present, then the AMBER Alert will be issued regionally.

    STEP ONE – Criteria for Regional AMBER Alert

    1.Law Enforcement must confirm that a child 17 years of age or younger has been abducted.

    2.Law Enforcement must believe that the circumstances surrounding the abduction indicate that the child is in danger of imminent harm or death.

    3 There must be enough descriptive information about the child, abductor, and/or suspect’s vehicle to believe an immediate broadcast will help the case.

    STEP TWO – Notification

    1.The Deputy Chief on duty will contact the Communications Supervisor and notify them that an AMBER Alert is being issued.

    2.The Communications Supervisor will notify the Memphis area’s local primary station (LP 1) that an AMBER Alert is being issued by the Memphis Police Department and that the Emergency Alert System (EAS) needs to be activated.

    3. The Primary Contact is: General Manager, WYPL-FM89.0 3030 Poplar Avenue, Memphis, TN The Secondary backup at WYPL Radio. The Alternate (LP2) to access the Emergency Alert System is: Chief Engineer WEGR

    4.The Communications Supervisor will notify the primary contact for issuing an AMBER alert.

    STEP THREE – Activation of an AMBER Alert

    1.An Investigative Services Supervisor will ensure that the Communications Supervisor is notified as soon as possible with the necessary information required to activate an AMBER Alert.

    2.Communications “Station B” will issue a Be On The Lookout (BOLO) containing summary information about the criminal child abduction and make an entry into the NCIC Missing Person File along with any information on a suspected abductor(s). A BOLO will be sent in all cases in which the Emergency Alert System (EAS) has been activated.

    3.The Investigator will secure the most recent photograph of child and take it to the nearest LOCATER system to create an AMBER Alert poster to be emailed to pre-programmed television, radio stations and law enforcement. The Locater System is currently located at the Northeast Precinct, Missing Persons Bureau (Monday – Friday / 0800 – 1600 hours). A Locator System will be available in the Memphis Police Department’s Felony Response Bureau, 201 Poplar Avenue, Room 11-01. Note: The Bartlett Police Department also has a Locater System in the event the department’s system is not available.

    4.The Duty Commander will establish a telephone hotline for receipt of tips and leads through Crime Stoppers (528-CASH).

    5.All personnel will follow National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s (NCMEC) guidelines and Investigative Checklist .(see attachment # 3)

    If there is reason to believe the abducted child may be outside the 150-mile radius of Memphis, a Statewide AMBER Alert will be issued through TBI. (1-800-TBI-FIND)

    Factors to Consider When Issuing the City Watch for Endangered Runaway/Missing/Throwaway Children

    Is the person younger than 18 years of age?
    Is the person believed to be out of the zone of safety for his/her age and/or developmental stage?
    Is the person mentally incapacitated?
    Are there medical needs that are vital in saving a life?
    Is the person drug dependent, including prescribed medication and/or illegal substances and is the dependency life threatening?

    Is the person believed to be in a life-threatening situation?
    Is the person believed to be in the company of individuals who could endanger his/her welfare?
    Is the person’s absence inconsistent with his or her established patterns of behavior and the deviation not readily explained?
    Are there other circumstances involved in the disappearance that would cause a reasonable person to conclude that the person should be considered “at-risk?”

    Factors to Consider When Issuing the City Watch for Endangered Missing Adults

    Is the person believed to be out of the zone of safety for his/her age and/or developmental stage?
    Is the person mentally incapacitated?
    Are there medical needs that are vital in saving a life?
    Is the person drug dependent, including prescribed medication and/or illegal substances and is the dependency life threatening?
    Is the person believed to be in a life-threatening situation?
    Is the person believed to be in the company of individuals who could endanger his/her welfare?
    Is the person’s absence inconsistent with his or her established patterns of behavior and the deviation not readily explained?
    Are there other circumstances involved in the disappearance that would cause a reasonable person to conclude that the person should be considered “at-risk?”


    (continued below)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    It is the policy of the Memphis Police Department to accept and report all missing person complaints (adult or juvenile) when received regardless of the length of absence of the missing person.

    In any circumstance where it appears that foul play may be involved (murder/kidnapping), the responding/reporting officer will notify their supervisor immediately and that supervisor will immediately notify the appropriate bureau by phone so that an investigation can begin as quickly as possible.

    Special caution should be taken in cases involving young children, which might require a City Watch or Amber Alert. It will also be the reporting/responding officer's responsibility to insure that the necessary radio broadcasts are put out on the missing person. A supervisor must be notified if the child is under the age of 13.

    When a reporting/responding officer arrives on the scene of a missing person call (adult or juvenile) that officer shall:

    1.Obtain as much of the following initial information on the missing person as possible:
    a Emergency contacts: phone numbers of family or friends that the victim would contact.
    b.Physical description (Age, race, sex, height, weight, hair and eye color, SMTs).
    c.Description of clothing worn when last seen.
    d.Time and place last seen.
    e.Vehicle information, if any.
    f.Direction of travel.
    g.With whom the victim may have been traveling.
    h.The general circumstances of the disappearance.
    i.Special medical needs.

    2.Take an incident report.

    3.Put out a City Wide broadcast over the Memphis Police Radio system.

    4.Notify a supervisor to determine if additional steps are necessary, depending on the situation, to locate the individual that is missing.

    5.The supervisor must notify the appropriate bureau. Depending on the time of day, or the situation, that would be either the Missing Persons Bureau, Felony Response “A” shift or Felony Response “C” shift, Homicide or Sex Crimes/Child Abuse.

    6.The officer will complete the report as soon as possible and, after approval of a supervisor; call CompStat at 545-2575 for a report number.

    7.The officer will fax the report to CompStat at 545-5492 as quickly as possible so that the report can be typed into the Visions System.

    8.The officer will call back to CompStat to verify that they received the report and that it was legible.

    9.A copy of the report will also be faxed to the Missing Persons Bureau at the same time.

    10.Once the report is typed, CompStat will send the information to Station “B” and the Missing Persons information will be entered into the N.C.I.C. and the T.C.I.C.

    In the situations where an officer is using a P.D.A. device to electronically input the report directly in Visions the officer must call CompStat and advise them of the victim’s name and the report number so that the information can be retrieved from the Visions report and entered into the N.C.I.C and T.C.I.C.

    If the individual is located after being entered into the N.C.I.C. and T.C.I.C. a memo must be submitted to the appropriate bureau so that the entry can be removed. It will be the responsibility of the Bureau that is handling the case to up-date the information in N.C.I.C. and T.C.I.C. and to ensure that the entry is removed after the person is located.


    Custodial Interference (T.C.A. 39-13-306) is the offense when a child younger than eighteen (18) years of age is taken by another member of the child's immediate family in defiance of a court custody ruling. This may include natural or adoptive parent, stepparent, grandparent, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, niece or nephew. (cousin is not included)

    When an officer receives a call of this type the reporting officer should attempt to determine who has custody of the child by viewing the custody papers if possible. A Custodial Interference Report should then be taken which should include:

    1) Relationship of the complainant to the child.

    2) Relationship of the person believed responsible for taking the child.

    3) Person who has custody of the child.

    4) When child was taken and any details which may aid in the investigation.

    5) Is child believed to be in any danger with present caretaker.

    6) Has this happened in the past and if so under what conditions was the child returned.

    Upon a report being taken, advise the complainant to contact the Juvenile Abuse Squad and have the custody papers available. The complaint will be investigated by the Juvenile Abuse Squad and a warrant will be obtained when necessary. A physical arrest is not to be made on the scene except in cases where the subject may leave the jurisdiction or if the child is in danger, at which time the child may be placed in protective custody.


    Pursuant to laws of arrest in Tennessee, a police officer may take a child into custody if there are reasonable grounds to believe that a child is suffering from an illness or an injury or is in immediate danger from his surroundings, and that his removal is necessary, or when there are reasonable grounds to believe that the child has run away from his parents, guardian, or other custodian. In the past there have been problems with the disposition of a mentally retarded child who was taken into custody by this department.

    An officer can take a mentally retarded child into custody in the following circumstances:

    1. Any mentally retarded youth who is apprehended in the commission of a crime is to be processed as any other youth would be and taken to Juvenile Court.

    2. When officers discover a mentally retarded child who appears to be lost and is unable to tell the officers where he/she lives, in such cases the child, due to his condition, is a danger to himself if not properly cared for. When officers receive a call from a citizen who has discovered a mentally retarded youth, the officer should make an effort to locate the child's home. However, when such information is not available, the child is to be taken to Juvenile Court, and the arrest ticket is to reflect that the child was taken into custody because said child was lost and the proper guardian could not be located.

    Under no circumstances are officers to take a mentally retarded child into custody in response to a call from the child's parents that the child is "unruly". Juvenile Court will not accept children under these circumstances through the Police Department.

    The only time that a mentally retarded child is to be removed from the custody of his parents or guardian is when the officer has reason to believe that the child is in immediate danger, and in such cases the mentally retarded child is to be treated as any other juvenile in like circumstances.

    According to State Law a juvenile who has run away from home may seek sanctuary at a Runaway House and be given shelter for seventy-two (72) hours. The only way the runaway may be removed during this period is by order of the Juvenile Court.

    However, sanctuary for seventy-two (72) hours at a Runaway House may not be granted if the juvenile runaway is known to have committed, or is under investigation for the commission of a delinquent or criminal act.


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