WICHITA, Kansas — In reflection of the timeline of events that occurred in the issuing of the Amber Alert Tuesday evening, KSN asked why it took so long and what the process is.
“The first question we had when we walked in the door last night was what took Missouri so long but it’s not being critical, we always preach and try to strive for that early activation but there’s a number of factors,” said KBI official Mark Malick. “There is a lot of moving parts if you will in the Amber Alert process.”
There are several different factors that go into determining whether an Amber Alert is issued. The director of our local Exploited and Missing Child Unit enlightened us on the process.
There are many cases of missing children across the country every year but Wichita Police Lieutenant Jeff Weible of the Exploited and Missing Child Unit says certain factors must be met before an Amber Alert is issued.
“The investigators have to look at the evidence that they have as far as whether the child has gone voluntarily, whether the child is missing under unusual circumstances, or based on the child’s age and the risk to the child,” said Weible.
To issue an Amber Alert, investigators must determine that an abduction has taken place. The victim has to be under 18 and there has to be a serious risk of injury or death. Police also need information about the abduction itself like a description of the child as well as suspect and vehicle description.
Amber Alerts are issued if there is hope of recovering the child safe and sound.
“A lot of it depends on the nature of the individual case. We have to look at each individual case on its own merits and weigh the risk factors that are associated with that case,” said Weible.
July 2012 was the last time an Amber Alert was issued in the state of Kansas.
One has been issued for a missing child in Wichita. Police put an Amber Alert out for Jaylin Calhoun back in November 2004 and he was safely recovered.