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NCJ Number: 204498 Find in a Library
Title: Looking Beyond Amber Alerts: Technologies to Supplement Amber Alert Systems Can Save Lives
Journal: Law Enforcement Technology  Volume:31  Issue:2  Dated:February 2004  Pages:68,70-72,74
Author(s): Ronnie Garrett
Editor(s): Ronnie Garrett
Date Published: February 2004
Page Count: 5
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article presents an overview of Amber Alert which encourages law enforcement agencies to alert the media following a confirmed child abduction and the new technologies and approaches available to supplement more effective Amber Alert systems.
Abstract: Originating in 1996 in Dallas-Fort Worth, TX, the Amber (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alert empowers law enforcement, the media, and the public to combat abduction through the immediate distribution of critical information about a missing child. To date, there are 46 statewide plans, 60 regional plans, and 31 local plans across the United States. While Amber Alert is national in scope, there is no national system currently in place. The PROTECT Act of 2003 provides $25 million to support State Amber Alert plans which includes training. In order to create and establish a comprehensive Amber Alert, everyone must be on the same page as to when an alert should be issued. State Amber Alert coordinators set guidelines for these alerts with most States following the criteria which includes: (1) the person must be under 18-years-old and have been taken without permission; (2) law enforcement must determine that the child is in imminent danger of bodily harm; and (3) there must be enough information available for an alert to be effective. A problem associated with the Amber Alert is its use of antiquated technologies. New technology is an extremely important piece of the puzzle in the recovery of abducted children. There are many technologies available, however agencies must select what works best for them. Forming partnerships is another way to ensure messages get out quickly and are heard by many. Adding technology and forming partnerships are important tools to add to law enforcement’s toolbox for missing child cases.
Main Term(s): Missing children
Index Term(s): Child Abduction; Information dissemination; Media coverage; Media support; Press releases
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