What to do if you spot a missing child

If you think the child living next door to you may be a kidnapped child
or even if you think you have seen a missing child on the street, what
should you do? First of all, stay calm. You want to obtain as much
information as you can and you want it to be as accurate as possible.
Here are some of the things to note:

  • A good description of the child. This includes height, weight, color of
    hair and complexion, color of eyes, the kind of clothing he/she is
    wearing, any distinctive or identifying features about the child.
  • The address where the child is living and the names of other “family”
    members and/or the school he/she is attending.
  • If the child was riding in a car when you spotted him/her, get a
    description of the car, including make, model, color, year, license plate
    number (even partial helps), and the state that issued the plate.

When you make your report, be ready to explain why you think the child
you saw was either in danger or is missing.

Here are some tips:
1. The child indicated to you that he/she had been taken from his
custodial parent(s).
2. You saw the child?s picture on television, a poster, mailer, etc.,
as a missing child.
3. Evidence that the child is being mistreated or neglected.

Don?t try to intercede yourself, but report the information you have to
911 or the appropriate law enforcement agencies, to the number listed on
the poster or an OPERATION LOOKOUT® caseworker at 1-800-782-SEEK.

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