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How do police find teenage runaways?
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How do police find teenage runaways?

What do they do?
how long do they look?
how much power goes into finding a single kid?.
where do they look?
do they keep looking in the same suspected areas?
.if they suspect a kid is in a certain place but have already looked there can they keep going back to look?
...i have a sociology paper and need any info on this....thanks : )


Jesse B
I worked missing persons for 3 yrs and when I got a teen age runaway it all depended on their age and if they were repeat offenders..

The older they were, the less effort was put into it. Typically 99% of the cases were kids that ran away on a regular basis, usually over the weekend. We would put them in TCIC/NCIC and call their parents and get an idea of where they were. We would send an officer to the address to check it out. Usually they were back home in a couple days.

We don't physically look for some repeat offenders because past history has shown they come back by a certain day. We just have the parents call us to let us know when they are home. We then take them out of NCIC

We usually look at their best friends house or girlfriend/boyfriends house.

We only go back to the places if new information indicates they would be there.

As long as it does not start invading peoples privacy........
1.look at their recent pasts, phone if possible, meet ups and generaly their life
2.they look for as long they have evidence, if no trail appears within a month or so, it will go down to paper
3.depending on the kid and state of society and his past, and how much evidence is avaiable will all vary in this factor
4.yes they can keep going back as long as they do not cause problems or too much hassle or worry in the area.

Or are you thinking of running away yourself?

1. They question everyone close to the child and get facts about close friends and relatives, things the chils enjoys doing, habits, description, anything that they can find out to give them an idea where to look.
2. I cannot tell you the exact amount of time they physically look, but the case never closes, and after awhile other organizations get involved like those pictures on milk cartons etc. But there are so many kids missing that the cops are overwhelmed. If it looks like a kidnapping, the FBI might get involved.
3. They look anywhere that the info they collect might lead them. (ie: if the child always wanted to be a star, the first place they might look is Hollywood)
4. Same as #3.
5. They may look in the same place many times if they think they missed something.

Hope this helps. Don't run away. If you are in trouble, seek help from the authorities, a teacher, a clergyman, or a family member that you feel safe with. I adore kids and it is a heart breaker when one goes missing.

I have a 14 year old runaway. The first time she ran away I thought the police were going to help, but they did not. They did not even make one phone call.

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