Hispanic kidnapping rate high

December 6, 2010 · Print This Article

According to a study by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) on the numbers from 2009, Latinos make up 235,000, or 20 percent, of the missing youth.

But the organization believes that only 70 percent of all missing children cases are actually reported, largely because parents or guardians fear being prosecuted.

“As soon as the child disappears, it is important that the family call the police and report and communicate with us to be provided the necessary services,” said Alex Davila of the NCMEC.

His organization operates a 24-hour hotline (1-800-THE-LOST or 1-800-843-5678). Once there is a police report, the case is assigned to an expert who is responsible for working with the family to find the child.

The NCMEC study reveals that 37 percent of attempted kidnappings occur between 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. during weekdays, with 43 percent involving children between 10 and 14 years. Seventy-two percent of cases with girls involved attempted rape, and in 68 percent of all reported cases, the suspect was driving a vehicle.

Davila says it is critical for parents and children to know each other’s whearabouts, review any suspicious scenarios, and know how to stay safe if they are in danger.

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