Child Alert - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Child Alert

  • Inside WSFA.comMore>>

  • Checklist for the First 24 Hours Your Child is Missing

    Checklist: What You Should Do When Your Child Is First Missing The first 48 hours following the disappearance of a child are the most critical in terms of finding and returning that child safelyMore >>
  • Checklist for the Second 24 Hours Your Child is Missing

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  • The Search: Key Points

    1. The actions of parents and of law enforcement in the first 48 hours are critical to the safe recovery of a missing child, but the rawness of emotion can seriously hinder the ability of parents to More >>
  • Gathering Evidence

    One of the most critical aspects in the search for a missing child is the gathering of evidence that may hold clues about a child's disappearance or whereabouts. The mishandling of evidence can adverselyMore >>
  • Working with Law Enforcement: Key Points

    1. You and law enforcement are partners in pursuit of a common goal -- finding your lost or abducted child -- and as partners, you need to establish a relationship that is based on mutual respect, trust,More >>
  • Ideas for Public Awareness Events

    Media attention generates leads and keeps your story in front of the public. The following ideas are also excellent ways to involve volunteers in the search campaign. Appear on radio and television programsMore >>
  • Working with the Media

    Setting Ground Rules In the very beginning, media interest is likely to be both intense and intimidating. Therefore, it's important for you to establish ground rules as to where and how often you or More >>
  • Checklist for Conducting Interviews with the Media

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  • Distributing Fliers and Other Information

    1. During the first 48 hours, it is critical that recent pictures of your child, descriptions of physical traits and personality characteristics, and facts pertinent to the disappearance be given to More >>
  • Working with Volunteers: Key Points and Activities

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  • Rewards and Donations

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  • Personal and Family Considerations: Key Points

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  • Checklist: Figuring Out How to Pay the Bills

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CHILD ALERT

When a child is kidnapped, police say what happens in the first few hours is crucial. And now they want 'you' to help with their investigations.

We've all heard the stories about kidnapped children. Now, the media has joined forces with the Montgomery Police Department and pledged to alert you as soon as a child is reported missing.

Samantha Runnion, Casey Williamson, Shannon Paulk, all of them were found too late to save their lives. Montgomery Police Chief John Wilson says he wants to keep that from happening here. So police will now alert local television and radio stations of missing children so the public can help in the search. Wilson says, "It increases ten-fold our odds of catching somebody before they leave the state or leave the city."

Under the plan the media will interrupt their normal programs and broadcast descriptions of the child, suspect, or vehicle. Station managers joined the police chief in signing the pledge thereby agreeing to the partnership.

WSFA General Manager Hoyt Andres says, "We're interested in doing anything we can in helping find an exploited or missing child especially one that is suspected of being abducted, and we recognize that the fastest way to do that is to get information out to the general public."

Chief Wilson knows the system will not be perfect at first. "We're going to do our best not to cry wolf, but bear with us. We're also going to err on the side of caution. "

Chief Wilson says the broadcasts will continue every 30 minutes for at least 4 hours. By that time, the hope is the child will be found alive and safe.

There's a second component to the department's plan. That component is making home fingerprinting kits available to any parent who asks for one.

The kits will be available on Saturday, August 17th at Montgomery Mall between noon and 4 p.m. And after that individuals can simply call the Montgomery Police Community Policing Department at 240-4800 . The kit includes information about everything parents should have to help in a missing child investigation. The first hours following the disappearance of a child are the most critical in terms of finding and returning that child safely home -- but they also can be the most troublesome and chaotic. The information in this kit may help to increase the chances of recovering your child.

AMBER ALERT

In about two months Alabama will be ready to do what California is doing to help find missing children.  The "Amber Alert System" that helped authorities there find two teenagers who had been abducted is coming here. 

The governor announced August 6th that a broadcast alert system similar to the one that warns television viewers and radio listeners of severe weather conditions will be used in Alabama to help find abducted children.

The system, which involves radio alert tones and "crawl" messages at the bottom of television screens, will be coupled with the coordination of state agencies to search for abducted kids. 

The state and the Alabama Broadcasters Association are working together to implement the Amber Alert plan.   The messages will include such information as the child's age and a description of the suspect if available.

Under the system, a call to an emergency number involving abducted kids will go straight to a person in charge of issuing the broadcast alerts. The Amber Alert system is named for 9-year-old Amber Hagerman who was kidnapped and murdered while riding her bicycle in Arlington, Texas in 1996.

 

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