Guillermo Mendoza of Indianapolis, spent Christms eve searching streets and hoping for a warning that never came: an Amber Alert to inform the public that his 12-year-old daughter, Christina Tedder, had disappeared. Christina vanished after she left her apartment to visit a nearby gas station. Family members ask why an Amber Alert was not issued, says the Indianapolis Star. Her body was found last Thursday; a family acquaintance was arrested.
“Police are constantly having to go through this balancing act, measuring the dangers that a child faces versus not desensitizing the public (by issuing too many alerts),” said Robert Hoever of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Alexandria, Va. Marion County authorities say no alert was issued in Christina’s case because no one witnessed any criminal activity in her disappearance. Amber Alerts in Indiana are issued only when there is evidence that a child younger than 18 might have been abducted or might be in peril. “Obviously, we sympathize with the family, but we’re talking about a thin-air situation here,” Lt. Brian Mahone of the Marion County Sheriff’s Department, said before Christina’s body was found. “It’s like this person vanished into thin air.”