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Posts Tagged ‘FDLE’

FDLE To Host Missing Children’s Day

TALLAHASSEE, FLA—The Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Missing Endangered Persons Information Clearinghouse Advisory Board will host the 11th annual Florida Missing Children’s Day in Tallahassee on Monday, Sept. 14.

The formal ceremony will take place on the courtyard between the Old Capitol and new Capitol at 10 a.m.

There are 326 Florida missing children listed at the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. The Florida Department of Children and Families lists 284 children missing in the “care” of the State.

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The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) has activated an AMBER Alert for 2-year-old Miami boy Donald Arauz.

was last wearing a white shirt and blue shorts. He was last seen in the area of the 400 block of SW 14th Avenue in Miami. The child may be in the company of Antonia Acuna, a white/hispanic female, 37 years old, 5 feet tall, 130 pounds, blonde hair, and brown eyes, who was last seen wearing a white tank top and blue jeans. The two may be travelling in a burgundy truck driven by a Hispanic male.

Anyone with information should contact the Miami Police Department at 305-579-6630 or 911.

If you visit the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, (NCMEC) to view active alerts, it currently displays an under construction page.

Under construction

Note: After being down at least five hours, the NCMEC website apparently has been restored and the link for Donald’s information is working. According to them, Antonia Acuna is his mother.

The AMBER Alert has been canceled. No further details are available.

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In 1993, prior to the availability of the AMBER Alert system, Marc Klaas’ daughter Polly was kidnapped from her home during a slumber party and killed by Richard Allen Davis. The recent abduction and alleged murder of 8-year-old Canadian girl, Victoria Stafford, and the abduction of  California child Bryant Rodriguez, has him questioning the suggested criteria required to activate an AMBER Alert.

Amber Alert creator worried about ‘fatal flaw’ in system

 Klaas has become increasingly critical during recent months, largely because of the kidnapping of a California child. Two men tied up a family, ransacked their home and took the child — but an Amber Alert wasn’t issued immediately because no one could describe the abductors’ vehicle, he said.  

“It’s astonishing.”

Vehicle descriptions are most likely in cases of family abductions, which are generally the least dangerous, Klaas said.

“It’s a fatal flaw. I’m really concerned that the children that need this kind of response the most are the children least served by it.”

Klaas suggested changes are simple. If an otherwise well-adjusted child, with no history or likelihood of running away, doesn’t return home on time, an Amber Alert should be issued. Suggestions such a system would be overused, thus making it less effective, are unfounded, he said.

“They say it (could) be overused, but there’s no basis for that. Those (cases) don’t happen that often.”

AMBER Alert Criteria:

Each state AMBER Alert plan has its own criteria for issuing AMBER Alerts. The PROTECT Act, passed in 2003, which established the role of AMBER Alert Coordinator within the Department of Justice (DOJ), calls for DOJ to issue minimum standards or guidelines for AMBER Alerts that states can adopt voluntarily. DOJ’s guidance on criteria for issuing AMBER Alerts is:

•Law enforcement must confirm that an abduction has taken place
•The child is at risk of serious injury or death
•There is sufficient descriptive information of child, captor, or captor’s vehicle to issue an alert
•The child must be 17 years old or younger
•It is recommended that immediate entry of AMBER Alert data be entered in FBI’s National Crime Information Center. Text information describing the circumstances surrounding the abduction of the child should be entered, and the case flagged as Child Abduction.Most state’s guidelines adhere closely to DOJ’s recommended guidelines.

 

Are they to strict? Are AMBER Alerts activated often enough?

One of the concerns many people have is that relaxing them would lead to abuse of the system if they are activated too often. Authorities suggest the public will eventually become desensitized and ignore them. Is it a valid concern? Obviously, the recent AMBER Alert involving the alleged abduction of Pennsylvania mother Bonnie Sweeten and her daughter doesn’t help as her abduction turned out to be a hoax.

An issue he didn’t address is what happens to the information once the media has aired the initial AMBER Alert?

In March of this year Allyson Corrales was abducted in Kansas City by her father after her murdered mother’s body was discovered. It was later cancelled even though she remains missing because authorities believe it will no longer assist in finding her. Meanwhile, Haleigh Cummings is still listed at the NCMEC as one of a handful of active alerts as she went missing on March 25, 2009. She is listed at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) as an unsolved alert but not an active one.

On May 23rd there was an AMBER Alert activated for Colorado Springs infant that is still shown as active at the NCMEC, however, if you visit the Colorado Bureau of Investigation site, there are no active alerts. Either way, Emanuel Guzman remains missing.

CBI Active Amber Alerts

Ironically, in Texas, AMBER Alerts are provided through a partnership with the Texas Governor’s Office and are posted at a site Marc Klaas owns, Beyond Missing. Most others are posted at the NCMEC.

So why is there is no central site to view all active alerts throughout the country? When an AMBER Alert is activated, why should you have to search multiple sites to find details? There are also numerous “ticker” services states use as secondary alerts but the alerts are posted only for those states subscribing to their service. This means a “ticker” on a website may only display a limited number of state’s alerts and not all active alerts.

Related Post: Are the criteria too strict or too lenient?

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An AMBER Alert has been activated by FDLE for 13-year-old Krystal Borrego.

Date Missing:
5/4/2009
Missing From: Homestead,FL
County: BROWARD
Birth Date: 7/13/1995
Age Disappeared: 13 yrs 9 months
Race: White
Sex: Female
Height: 5′ 02″
Weight: 130
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Brown

Narrative: Krystal Borrego was last seen in the area of 9th Court and Washington Ave in Homestead. Krystal may be with an unknown black male in a 1990’s, dark red two door Saturn.

If you have any information concerning the whereabouts of this child, please contact the Homestead Police Department 1-305-247-1535 or 911.

Update 05-06-09: This Amber Alert has been canceled.

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A Missing Child Alert has been issued for Jacoysha Horne who was last seen in the area of the 150 block of Cory Lane in Winter Springs, FL. She may be in the company of 2 Hispanic males, one whose name may be “David”. They may be traveling in a large silver or gray SUV. One of the subjects may have a yellow patch on his right shoulder. Another vehicle that may be involved is a green Volvo with a New York tag on the front. The direction of travel is unknown at this time.

She isn’t listed at the NCMEC as a missing child. In January a missing child alert was issued for 6-year-old, Adji Desir, in Immokalee, Fl.  He remains missing.

Related Posts:

A missing child in south Fl

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A 4-year-old child from Satsuma, FL Haleigh Cummings, is missing and possibly endangered according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). She hasn’t been listed at the NCMEC.

A missing and endangered child alert has been issued in Putnam County.

Authorities are searching for Haleigh Cummings, a 4-year and 5-month old girl last seen in the Hermus Cove area of Satsuma about 3 a.m. Haleigh was wearing a pink shirt and underwear, according a Missing Child Alert.

She is described as 3-feet tall, white with blonde hair and blue eyes, weighing 39 pounds.

Authorities said Haleigh’s father returned home and though there was another person in the residence, discovered that his daughter was missing

If you have any information concerning the whereabouts of this endangered child, contact the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office at (386) 329-0808.    Florida-Times Union 

Update: An AMBER Alert has been activated at the FDLE site and she is now reported to be 5 -years-old. There is also now an AMBER Alert at the NCMEC.

It was changed to an Amber Alert shortly before 11 a.m. EST.

Why was an AMBER Alert issued for Haleigh but not for Adji Desir, who went missing in Southwestern Florida, when neither reportedly have any witnesses to an abduction?

satsuma-fl

Update 4:00 p.m. EST: In a news conference authorities suggested the child had been sleeping in the same bed as the girlfriend.  Apparently, the girlfriend,  Misty Croslin, went to use the bathroom and upon her return the child was missing. There was allegedly a 2-year-old sibling in the same room however, the spokesperson declined to disclose the gender. The back door to the mobile home was also open but when asked if it was broken into, the spokesperson didn’t answer.  

 The Orlando Sentinel has since reported the sibling is a 2-year-old boy.

The double-wide trailer on Green Lanewhere Haleigh lived with her father, Croslin and a 2-year-old brother showed no sign of forced entry, according to Lt. Johnny Greenwood of the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office. A back door was ajar, sheriff’s Capt. Steve Rose said.

Lonely little brother waiting for Haleigh

SATSUMA – Ronald Cummings Jr. will turn 4 years old Sunday, a birthday his family isn’t sure they’ll remind him about.

First Coast News:

Haleigh’s father told First Coast News he came home from work and discovered his daughter missing.

“She’s afraid of the dark,” said Ronald Cummings. “She didn’t leave my house. Somebody came in my back door and stole my child while I was at work.”

Mr. Cummings said when he came home he found signs of forced entry to his home, but investigators with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office said they didn’t find anything to suggest a break-in.
The sheriff’s office said Haleigh’s bedroom door was open when her father’s girlfriend woke up to go check on her at about 3:45 a.m.
Investigators haven’t said what stirred the father’s girlfriend at that hour, but authorities say she called 911 when she discovered Haleigh missing from her room.

News4Jax:    911 call

Haleigh was last seen in her Satsuma home on Green Lane with her 2-year-old brother and her father’s 17-year-old girlfriend. The girlfriend told police she put the children to bed at 10 p.m. Monday but when she awoke at 3 a.m. to use the bathroom Haleigh was missing and the back door of the home was open.

Update 02-12-09 According to Fox News:

Ronald Cummings, told FOX News’ Greta Van Susteren that Croslin was watching his daughter while he was at work as a crane operator.
According to Cummings, Haleigh had gotten up to use the bathroom. When she didn’t return, Croslin went to look for her and noticed the back door was open.
 In another statement from the same article:

Cummings said his girlfriend was awake and frantic after she found Haleigh was gone. But in the police report, obtained by FOX News, Cummings reportedly told officers that his “dumb bitch girlfriend” told him Haleigh was gone when he got home from work.

The 17-year-old called 911 for help as Haleigh’s father returned home from an overnight shift at work:

CALLER: I just woke up and my back door was all open and I can’t find my daughter.

DISPATCH: Can’t find what?

CALLER: My daughter.

DISPATCH:Ok. When did you last see her?

CALLER: Um, we just like, you know, it was about 10 o’clock. She was sleeping (inaudible).

DISPATCH: Ok. How old is your daughter?

CALLER: She’s 5.

Haleigh’s father and grandmother are pleading for the safe return of their little girl. The 5-year-old girl is described as having blond hair and brown eyes, is 3 feet tall and weighs 39 pounds.

DISPATCH: OK. What was she last seen wearing, Ma’am?

CALLER: She was in her pajamas. We were sleeping.

DISPATCH: OK. Alright, you said your back door was wide open?

CALLER: Yes, with a brick. Like, there was a brick on the floor. Like, when I went to sleep the door was not like that.

DISPATCH: Was your back door locked do you know?

CALLER: Yes. The back door always stays locked.

FATHER: I just got home from work, my 5-year-old daughter is gone. I need someone to be here now. I’m telling you. If I find whoever has my daughter before you all do, I’m killing him. I don’t care. I’ll spend the rest of my life in prison.

DISPATCH: It’s OK sir, we got them on the way. Can you give me a description of the pajamas she was wearing?

FATHER: I don’t (expletive) know I was at work.
 

Abduction now suspected for missing Putnam girl

Investigators say a continuing collection of evidence home points away from homicide

 Last night Ronald Cumings and Misty Croslin appeared “On the Record” with Greta Van Susteren. There seemed to be conflicting accounts concerning the back door use, deadbolt and the position of the beds the children were sleeping in, Missing Haleigh’s Dad and His Girlfriend Address Polygraph Test Questions ‘On the Record’

“We do believe it is an abduction,” Maj. Gary Bowling of the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office said today.

He said soon after investigators arrived at Ronald Cummings’ mobile home early Tuesday to search for daughter Haleigh Ann-Marie Cummings, it appeared she did not wander off.

 hch2

SATSUMA, Fla. – Officers and volunteers in Putnam County called Friday a productive day in the search for Haleigh Cummings.

More than 200 volunteers with the search-and-rescue group Texas Equusearch headed out into the woods on horseback, ATVs and on foot. Investigators said the day’s efforts turned up “items of interest.”

“We did discover some items of interest. I can’t go into detail as to what those items are,” Putnam County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Rose said in an afternoon news briefing. “We are very hopeful that she is alive … and we are looking forward to a very positive outcome.”

‘Items of Interest’ Found to be Insignificant to Disappearance of Haleigh

SATSUMA, FL— Chief Rick Ryan with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office said that the items of interest found yesterday have been analyzed by the FDLE crime lab and found to be insignificant in the disappearance of 5-year-old Haleigh Cummings.

Update 02-16-09:Sheriff Jeff Hardy and Special Agent Dominick Pape held a press conference but would not elaborate about evidence or to links about a possible sex offender with ties to Tn., another with ties to the Croslin family or to Chad Eugene Reynolds other than to state he was an absconded sexual predator but not a person of interest.

Update 02-17-09 Steve Rose, of the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, declined to describe the new information Tuesday in the case of Haleigh Cummings.

Police Have ‘New Leads’ in Disappearance of Missing Florida Girl Haleigh Cummings

Update 02-17-09    A press conference was held at 4:00 p.m. E.S.T.

There was nothing significant mentioned other than Haleigh was not wearing a pink shirt as initially reported which now is in the hands of FDLE; their sitewas updated at 2:00 p.m. E.S.T. to reflect the change in the clothing description. They are asking for tips to be called into the CrimeStoppers tipline 1-888-277-8477.  Her poster heading has been changed to reflect ENDANGERED though authorities downplayed the signifigance suggesting the word might solicit more tips.

Police are believed to be following a lead concerning whether Misty Croslin was even at home at the time of Haleighs disappearance which could raise additional questions.

Update 02-19-02: Putnam County Sheriff’s Department has made an arrest of a sexual predator, Timothy Randolph Loucakis. They said he is not presently a suspect but was in violation of his GPS monitoring boundaries. The residencial address he lists at the National Sex Offenders Registry is approximately .8 mile from Haleigh’s home.

There was also a possible sighting of Haleigh outside Knoxville, Tn

Update 02-20-09:Last person to see missing Haleigh appears on ‘Today Show’

Misty Croslin, the last person to see Haleigh Cummings before the 5-year old vanished 11 days ago, appeared on the Today Show this morning and answered some questions about her involvement in the case.
In recent days, rumors have circulated about a relative of Croslin’s who was in Satsuma at the time of Haleigh’s disappearance, but has since return to Tennessee, and officials with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office have confirmed that they have spoken with the man.
Today Show host Matt Lauer asked Croslin, 17, if she thought the relative had anything to do with Haleigh’s disappearance.
“I really don’t know, I don’t know if he did or not,” Croslin said.
That’s an interesting way to answer the question,” Lauer responded. “I think that a lot of people might say that, ‘No I’m positive that person had nothing to do with Haleigh.'”
“I’m not quite sure at all no.He’s a criminal pretty much, he’s been in trouble his whole life. I don’t trust him,” Croslin replied, adding that she hasn’t spoken to the relative since he left Satsuma.

Update 02-22-09: In every press conference, the Sheriff’s Office Spokesperson tells the media the only story is the recovery of a missing child which apparently frustrates them and still they wonder why.

Florida Times UnionTennessee cousin not a suspect in the case

Fox News Missing Florida Girl’s Family: Pedophile Cousin Took Haleigh Cummings

There are now reports that Haleigh’s younger 4-year-oldbrother told authorities and his mother his sister was abducted by a man dressed in black. Authorities are investigating the lead, but it does raise the question, how can two children be awakened by an intruder yet Ronald Cumming’s girlfriend Misty Croslin remained asleep? The Sheriff’s Office has also suspended their daily briefings.

The reward for information leading to her safe return is now $25,500.

Update 02-26-09:  Authorities are searching a construction dumpster located approximately 1/2 mi. from Haleigh’s home after a cadaver dog apparently “hit” on the dumpster.

Cadaver Dog Focuses on Dumpster in Haleigh Search

The emptied everything out. It took about two hours. And just a few minutes ago police came outside and said they found nothing. They found no evidence, no dead animals. They have no idea why these dogs hit on the dumpster.
 
Police said they have several new leads in the disappearance of a 5-year-old Florida girl after interviewing individuals they had missed during earlier sweeps of her neighborhood.

“We were able to come up with several good leads that we are following up on today,” Rose told reporters. “At this time we cannot discuss the nature of those leads.”
 
Capt. Steve Rose, of the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, declined to describe the information Tuesday in the case of Haleigh Cummings.

 

Update 03-03-09: Psychics Providing Tips in Search for Haleigh

SATSUMA, FL — It’s day 21 and there is still no sign of five-year-old Haleigh Cummings.
Police say they have received more than 2,000 leads, including 100 tips from psychics, but none of them has led to the child.

Update 03-09-09: A month after Haleigh Cummings went missing, First Coast News is reporting her father Ronald, has proposed marriage to his 17-year-old girlfriend Misty. The two have apparently dated 7 months. Misty was the last known person to have seen Haleigh the night of her disappearance. Admittedly, some initial thoughts were concerning spouses testifying against each other if they are involved however, neither has been implicated concerning Haleighs disappearance nor are they considered persons of interest. The wedding is scheduled to take place Thursday March 12th in a private ceremony at Dunn’s Creek Baptist Church in San Mateo  (church disclaimer), the same church which has been holding vigils for Haleigh.

Update 03-10-09: The reward for the safe return of Haleigh and conviction of her kidnappers has been raised to $35,000 after a donation by the Jacksonville, Fl. based Justice Coalition. In addition, the CBS show “Without a Trace” will mention her story when it airs tonight at 10:00pm ET/PT. She is the featured missing child case.

View other previously aired persons in the archives.

PALATKA, FLThe father of Haleigh Cummings has asked his teenaged girlfriend to marry him.

Ronald Cummings, 25, popped the question to Misty Croslin Sunday night at Chili’s, with several family members around them.

She said yes.

Outside the Putnam County Courthouse where Croslin and Cummings went Monday to get the paperwork for a marriage license, Croslin showed off her ring.

“Everybody’s probably going to take this marriage thing the wrong way but it’s not,” said Croslin. “Everything’s still focused on Haleigh. This is what Haleigh wanted. She’s always talked about it.”

 Update 03-17-09:  There is a new headquarters to receive tips and a website for missing Haleigh http://www.haleighbug.com

It wasn’t too long ago there was a Team Trenton Command Center. If you click on the donation link you see this message.

 The site may be under construction but is the intent to help find Haleigh or to support Crystal?

Update 06-03-09: Haleigh center moves to Baker County

First white, then purple, now white again, the Satsuma “Haleighbug” building on U.S. 17, named for missing child Haleigh Cummings, stands vacant – at least in Putnam County.

Due to seizures, Crystal Sheffield, Haleigh’s mother, can no longer drive from her home in Baker Coun-ty, Kim Picazio, Sheffield’s lawyer, said.

“It’s about the mother and the missing child, so we just decided to move it to her,” Picazio said.

The Haleighbug Foundation became a registered nonprofit organization in early May, and will now be run out of Baker County on the family’s hay farm.

 

 

Realted Posts: Psychics and missing children

Please help us help Crystal Sheffield by donating whatever you can. Call 800-XXX-XXXX with your gift today. Or stop by our new location at 1185 US 17 South, Satsuma, FL 32189 and purchase a Haleighbug bracelet, make a donation all proceeds go to Crystal Sheffield.

 

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In an editorial in the Fort Myers  News-Press there were these quotes about the decision not to issue an AMBER Alert or Missing Children Alert.

Kristen Perezluha, a spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, explaining the difference between the two types of alerts.

Perezluha said Missing Child Alerts, which aren’t carried on the EAS, exist for cases that need to be publicized but don’t meet the Amber Alert criteria.

Collier County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Michelle Batten, was quoted as saying this about the decision not to issue a Missing Child Alert in the disappearance of Adji Desir.

Collier County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Michelle Batten said her department hasn’t issued a Missing Child Alert because Adji’s case received such wide exposure in local, state and national media. “We felt like the word definitely got out,” Batten said.

Did it? The decision to not issue alerts was reportedly because his disappearance didn’t meet pre-defined criteria for an AMBER Alert and he wasn’t thought to have been abducted but simply “wandered off”.

Unfortunately, most of the mainstream exposure was a brief clip on news channels sans details or on the Internet questioning why an Amber Alert or Missing Child Alert wasn’t issued. The national media didn’t begin to mention his case until days after he was reported missing.

Though his disappearance has been the subject of a fifteen second blurb on America’s Most Wanted and on Nancy Grace’s show, not all Floridians watch either nor where they aired immediately following his disappearance.

Is it really realistic to think these shows or news briefs lacking basic information with no followup airings have the same impact on finding a missing child as an AMBER Alert or Missing Child Alert would?

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