Cleveland Issue: Do Cops Do Enough About Missing Persons?


The discovery of an alleged serial killer’s 11 victims, most of them poor, drug-addicted black women, has prompted calls for Cleveland police to respond faster and devote more resources to missing-persons cases, reports the Associated Press. Police say they already have a good system for finding the lost and can’t be held accountable for people they don’t know are missing. Only three of the victims had been reported missing.

Encouraged by the U.S. Justice Department in 2005, some states have passed stronger laws requiring police to be more aggressive in searching for missing adults. States that have toughened laws in the last five years requiring police to do more about missing adults include Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Nebraska, and New Jersey. Some police resist such efforts, saying the requirement taxes already strained departments and many adults often disappear by choice.

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