Amber Alert Sounds Success in its 12 Years - NBC 7 San Diego

Amber Alert Sounds Success in its 12 Years



    On Monday, tipsters led law enforcement to a 6-month-old girl, who had been taken from her Santa Barbara home and abducted to San Ysidro by her father. As NBC 7’s Dave Summers reports, since Amber Alert started in California in 2002, it has had a 96 percent success rate. (Published Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014)

    Another Amber Alert ended in success Monday night in San Ysidro.

    A Santa Barbara 6-month-old girl was abducted by her father, who was arrested and the girl was safely recovered.

    The first Amber Alert sounded in August 2002 and since then 96 percent of children reported missing through that system have been recovered -- perhaps the most successful citizen participation law enforcement program out there.

    In all, 287 children were reported missing through Amber Alert since its inception and 276 of them were returned home.

    The California Highway patrol reports there's an average of five to seven tips hourly during state alerts.

    A year ago, the first wireless emergency alert surprised  cell phone users: It was the Amber Alert for  the missing Hanna Anderson and her brother Ethan.

    What's aided in the success? Wireless communication and social media have exponentially increased the odds of child recoveries.

    “Everyone has a smartphone these days. Everyone has a Facebook page. Everyone has a social media account where people are always getting updates and they are always sharing and the word gets out,” CHP Officer Kevin Pearlstein said.

    The highest number of children reported missing through Amber Alert in a one year period is 32. So far this year, there have been 22 child abductions reported.