Happy Friday!! I want to thank folks for riding with me this week on the issue of missing black persons. I’ve been wanting to write about this issue for a while, but felt one post wouldn’t do it justice. I will revisit the issue as cases pop up. I thought I would wrap up this series with what to do if a loved one goes missing. The Black and Missing But Not Forgotten website offers some great strategies to cope with a missing relative.
Here is information on how to handle a missing adult:
Contact local law enforcement
Some law enforcement agencies are reluctant to take a report of a missing adult. Stress that you are not trying to control your child’s life but that YOU ARE TRULY CONCERNED FOR HIS OR HER SAFETY.
- Write down the name of the officer who takes the report as well as the badge number, telephone number and the police report number.
- Find out from the officer who will follow up on the initial investigation.
- Keep a notebook and record all information on the investigation.
- Be sure to ask if your child is entered into NCIC (National Crime Information Computer). The child must be entered here or other law enforcement agencies won’t know that your child has been reported as missing if the child is picked up or a check has been run on them for something else. (It is suggested that you view a read-out of the NCIC report. Sometimes information, such as height and/or eye color, may have been entered with the wrong data. This viewing gives you a chance to correct what might have been entered erroneously.)
- Make fingerprint and dental records available to the police.
- If there are medical or emotional concerns, make sure they are clearly stated when filing the report.
- If a vehicle is involved, make sure the license is also entered into NCIC
- Most often with adult missing, the families do the majority of the searching.
- Sometimes, there is a desire to cancel a bankcard or credit card. It might be smarter to have law enforcement “flag” these cards so that if used, they will be notified, and might lead you to a paper trail of your loved one or someone who knows where your loved one is.