Time and resources are things necessary in responding to a child abduction. Time is never a guarantee, but the resources are just a call away.
In 2004, 11-year-old Carlie Brucia was abducted in Sarasota. In 2005, nine-year-old Jessica Lunsford was abducted in Homosassa. Could this happen in your town?
Peter Bucher, Madison County Sheriff, says, "Just because you live in a rural community where everybody knows everybody doesn't mean that it can't happen here. What we want to try to do is be prepared in the event that that happens."
In the event of a child abduction the entire state of Florida will be prepared thanks to the Child Abduction Response Teams, better known as CART.
The teams, made up of different law enforcement agencies, held their quarterly meeting Wednesday in Madison.
Tom McInerney, FDLE Special Agent, says, "Once we've identified the resources, we want to come together, share information, share best practices from previous abductions and learn from them to constantly improve our response teams."
The FBI was also present. Officers were trained on how to respond quickly and how to identify and interview suspects.
SGT J.B. Johnson with the Homicide Unit of Tallahassee Police says, "It allows us to speak with other agencies to present unique aspects of our cases to see if there are related-type cases in the area, possible suspects on the horizon."
Even the media is a part of that partnership. Law enforcement officers say that each resource available is another tool that increases the chances of bringing a child home safely.
The U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Justice Programs has begun its own "CART" program modeled after Florida's.
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