9/16/05 Rules Meant to be Broken?
The abducted child must be 17 years of age or younger, and the law enforcement agency believes the child has been abducted (unwillingly taken from their environment without permission from the child’s parent or legal guardian).
The law enforcement agency believes the abducted child is in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death.
A law enforcement investigation has taken place that verified the abduction or eliminated alternative explanations.
Sufficient information is available to disseminate to the public that could assist in locating the child, suspect, and/or the suspect’s vehicle.
The Child must be entered into the Virginia Criminal Information Network (VCIN) and the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) missing person files as soon as practical.
If all of the aforementioned criteria are not met, the Virginia AMBER Alert Plan will not be activated.
Please notice that it says that ALL the criteria must be met in order to activate it. Authorities in Virginia activated it for Taylor today, but news sources state the following:
"Police have yet to find evidence of foul play. They have not foreclosed the possibility that Behl left campus voluntarily and is now perhaps reluctant to return, given the extensive publicity her disappearance has generated."
I understand there is a person of "interest" and search warrants issued and carried out. Even after that there is still no evidence of foul play, (at least none revealed yet) and nothing that would indicate the alert should have been utilized.
How then, does she qualify for an Amber Alert? Why is an exception being made? I will let the reader come to their own conclusions about that.
Again, I will state that we want Taylor to be found, soon and safe. We also want resources provided to the missing to be allocated to all of them, not just a select few. There is a reason why the Amber Alert has guidelines for activation. That reason is not because of pressure on the police due to media attention received.
There may be details they are holding back in which they know for sure that Taylor is in danger, but according to all the news sources read, there are still no positive indicators to that effect. I realize there might be something unsaid at this point in the investigation. Only time will tell, or, perhaps I should say that I hope all is revealed very soon.
I've lost count of the number of disraught parents of a missing child I've spoken to who lamented: "I asked them to do an Amber Alert on my missing son/daughter, and they said they couldn't do it." I then have to explain to them that it is because their child's case and known details did not fit the criteria. If they were to be aware of the case discussed today, how would I then explain this to them?
Postnote: I have emailed the Virgina Amber Alert site. Let's see if they respond.