HUMAN TRAFFICKING PANEL DISCUSSES POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS IN NORTH DAKOTA
North Dakota Senator Heidi Heitkamp and representatives from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) spoke at a panel on child trafficking October 20, 2017, in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
“I think it is critically important that this not just be a social worker’s problem, a cop’s problem, a legislator’s problem; that this be all of our problem because these are all of our kids,” said Heitkamp.
NCMEC received reports of 113 children missing in North Dakota during the last three years. NCMEC said the average of a trafficking victim is 15 and there has been an increase in the number of male trafficking victims.
The panel suggested more training for social workers and nurses and more legislation to stop websites known for sex trafficking.
GEORGIA MARKS ANNIVERSARY OF VICTIM WHO IS THE NAMESAKE OF THE STATE’S CHILD ABDUCTION ALERT
Georgia marked the 20th anniversary of discovering the body of Levi Frady, the namesake of Levi’s Calls, the state’s child abduction alert system. On October 22, 1997, eleven-year-old Levi Frady was abducted as he was heading to his home. His bike was found the day before his body was discovered. Shortly after the incident, local law enforcement and Georgia broadcasters teamed up to create Georgia’s version of the AMBER Alert, naming it after Frady.
IDAHO CAR DEALERSHIP OFFERS CHILD ID KITS
A Chevrolet dealership in Twin Falls, Idaho, is working with Idaho AMBER Alert partners to provide child identification kits. On October 21, 2017, they held an event to create printouts that include a child’s photo and fingerprints in case the child ever becomes missing or is abducted. The information can also be uploaded for police investigations.
PENNSYLVANIA CONSIDERS ADDING HIT-ANDRUNS TO AMBER ALERT PLAN
Pennsylvania Representative Tina Pickett has introduced legislation that would expand the state’s AMBER Alert program to include notifications after hit-and-run incidents. The alerts would be distributed by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to vehicle repair shops after a hit-and-run accidents resulting in the serious bodily injury or death of victims.
MISSOURI LEGISLATORS REINTRODUCE “HAILEY’S LAW”
Two Missouri lawmakers are again trying to pass “Hailey’s Law,” a bill that would require the state’s AMBER Alert Oversight Committee to meet at least annually. The law is named for 10-year old Hailey Owens, who was abducted and murdered in Springfield, Missouri in 2014. The trial for her alleged killer was scheduled to begin October 30, 2017.
PHILADELPHIA POLICE SAY ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE CAN HELP DURING AMBER ALERTS
Philadelphia police officers are now using cameras with Artificial Intelligence (AI) to solve crimes, and they believe this same technology could be very effective during an AMBER Alert. The dash-mounted cameras can identify a specific vehicle and license plate number. The AI technology can also be used to identify faces, weapons or certain behaviors on surveillance videos.