It isn’t the first time someone has been charged with filing a false 911 report resulting in an AMBER Alert being activated. However, she may be one of the younger individulas facing the charge.

Charges filed in AMBER Alert hoax

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation charged a 14-year-old girl today with filing a false report in a 911 hoax that caused authorities in Tennessee and Missouri to issue AMBER Alerts last week.

The teen, from Caruthersville, Mo., has been issued two juvenile petitions after she was accused of calling a Dyer County 911 dispatcher on July 16 and claiming she and her 10-year-old sister had been kidnapped by a man and were being molested in red or burgundy Chevy Suburban, according to a TBI news release.

Tennessee authorities issued an AMBER Alert for “Latrice Watson” after two calls were placed to Dyer County dispatch, the release said. Two more prank calls followed, which were handled by the Pemiscot County, Mo., 911 center.

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“Operation Orange Tree”

“Operation Orange Tree” Sees Child Porn Suspects Busted

In a news conference on Tuesday, June 9, 2008, AMW host John Walsh and Florida Gov. Charlie Crist announced a new tactic in the fight against child pornography.

The Full Story

In July of 2006, after President Bush signed the “Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Protection Act of 2006″, House Judiciary Committee Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R- Wis.), the sponsor of H.R. 4472, released the following statement:

”This legislation makes one thing clear to sex offenders across this country — you better register, and you better keep your information current, or you are going to jail. More than 100,000 sex offenders currently fail to register and are ‘missing,’ with locations unknown to the public and law enforcement. The children of America will be safer today because of this legislation championed by John Walsh and so many other victims that have responded to tragedy with determination, focus, and inspiration.

“Today, President Bush Signed The Adam Walsh Child Protection And Safety Act Of 2006. This law marks an important step forward in our Nation’s efforts to protect those who cannot protect themselves. It will strengthen Federal laws to protect our children from sexual and other violent crimes, prevent child pornography, and make the Internet safer for our sons and daughters.

President Bush Believes Our Society Has A Duty To Protect Children From Exploitation And Danger. By enacting this law, we are sending a clear message across the country that those who prey on our children will be caught, prosecuted, and punished to the fullest extent of the law.

The case of missing Nevaeh Buchanan has many questioning her mother’s possible relationships with known convicted sex offenders. In Oklahoma a person charged with raping a five-year-old, as reported by the McAlester News-Capital, has many concerned not only with the mother’s judgement but the judicial system as well.

Last week, “O’Reilly Factor’s” Bill O’Reilly called for the resignation of District 18 Judge Thomas Bartheld for his handling of the David Harold E. Earls rape case.

As was first reported on May 17 by the McAlester News-Capital, Earls, 64, of Wister, pleaded no contest May 13 to charges of first degree rape and forcible sodomy of a 5-year-old girl. He was sentenced by Bartheld to a year in prison, with another 19 years suspended, following a plea bargain negotiated between Earls’ attorney, Tim Mills, and local prosecutors.

The story which aired on The O’Reilly factor, “Factor Investigation Segment” Geraldo Rivera unsuccessfully attempted to confront a judge and district attorney in Oklahoma who sentenced the child rapist to just one year in jail.

In his report Geraldo described McAlester as somewhat of an idyllic place to live but ironically failed to mention it is also home to the Oklahoma State Penitentiary. In fact it is the chief incarceration facility for the state of Oklahoma. The prison houses maximum-security inmates and is the site of Oklahoma’s death row and execution chamber.


First National Retreat for Families of Missing Persons
To Help Families Cope With Unique Loss

“Keys to Healing” Retreat June 12-14 sponsored by nonprofit Project Jason to teach families methods for dealing with trauma, “living in the not knowing.”

Omaha, Nebraska – (May 2009) – Project Jason, a nonprofit that assists families of missing persons, announced the first national retreat ever to focus specifically on the wellbeing of family members who are searching for their lost loved ones. “Keys to Healing: Mind, Body, and Spirit” will take place June 12-14 at the Swanson Center at Camp Carol Joy Holling near Omaha in Ashland, Nebraska.

“There are resources that teach families of the missing the mechanics of what to do when someone disappears,” said Kelly Jolkowski, president and founder of Project Jason. “Until now, there were no opportunities for family members of both missing children and adults to focus on the emotional and physical trauma that understandably accompanies such an ordeal. We want the families who attend Keys to Healing to walk away with better coping skills, self-understanding and renewed hope.”

The retreat is open to family members of missing persons whose cases are listed with law enforcement agencies in North America. Sessions will be conducted by professional instructors, including a licensed counselor, personal trainer, dietician, missing person advocate, massage therapist, and a minister of faith. Attendees will learn how long term trauma affects the body, how to address that trauma, and how to recognize and handle emotions such as guilt, fear and anger that come into play. There will also be a session designed to answer the question of “How do I go on?”

Featured speakers:

Duane T. Bowers, LPC, is the nation’s foremost traumatic loss therapist and educator. Among his many services to families dealing with grief is providing support to families of abducted, missing, exploited and murdered children through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) and to families of missing persons of any age through Project Jason’s Healing Harbor. Bowers is the author of “Guiding Your Family Through Loss and Grief” and “A Child is Missing: Providing Support for Families of Missing Children.”

Richard J. Hauser, S.J., is a professor of theology at Creighton University, a nationally-renowned speaker, and author of numerous books, including “In His Spirit: A Guide to Today’s Spirituality” and “Finding God in Troubled Times,” in which Hauser offers meaningful answers to all those who have found their faith challenged by difficult experiences.

For more information about “Keys to Healing: Mind, Body, and Spirit”
Project Jason Retreat 2009, go to http://www.projectjason.org/retreat.html

**Media attendance at the retreat, and interviews with Project Jason representatives and families, are accommodated upon request.

About Project Jason

Project Jason, founded in 2003, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting the families of missing persons, and creating and increasing public awareness of missing people through a variety of outreach and educational activities. Project Jason brings hope and assistance to families of the missing by providing resources and support. The organization is based in Omaha, Nebraska.

For more information about Project Jason’s objectives, activities and services, go to http://www.projectjason.org

What Parents Can Do to Keep Children Safe

ALEXANDRIA, VA – Every year in America an estimated 800,000 children are reported missing, more than 2,000 children each day. Of that number, 200,000 are abducted by family members, and 58,000 are abducted by non-family members. The primary motive for non-family abductions is sexual. Each year 115 children are the victims of the most serious abductions, taken by non-family members and either murdered, held for ransom, or taken with the intent to keep.

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) wants to remind the public that National Missing Children’s Day is May 25, which coincides with the three-day Memorial Day holiday weekend this year. The organization wants parents to know there are things they can do to keep their children safe and it urges parents to take 25 minutes and review the attached safety tips which are a part of NCMEC’s Take 25 national child safety campaign.

“We know teaching children about safety works,” said Ernie Allen, president and CEO of NCMEC. “It is important that parents take the time to talk to their children about safety.”

An analysis of attempted abduction cases by NCMEC found that in 88% of the cases, the child escaped would-be abductors through their own actions, by yelling, kicking, pulling away, running away or attracting attention.

May 25th is the anniversary of the day in 1979 when 6-year-old Etan Patz disappeared from a New York street corner on his way to school and has been observed as National Missing Children’s Day since 1983 when it was first proclaimed by President Ronald Reagan. Etan’s story captivated the nation. His photo, taken by his father, a professional photographer was circulated nationwide and appeared in media across the country and around the world. The powerful image of Etan has come to symbolize the anguish and trauma of thousands of searching families. The search for Etan continues. He is still missing.

This year the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children celebrates its 25th anniversary. It is the leading nonprofit organization dealing with the issues of missing and sexually exploited children. NCMEC has played a role in the recovery of more than 138,500 children. Today more children come home safely than ever before. In 2008, NCMEC helped recover more children than any other year in the organization’s 25-year history, raising the recovery rate from 62% in 1990 to 97% today. And more of those who prey upon children are being identified and prosecuted. Yet too many children are still missing and too many children are still the victims of sexual exploitation. There is much more that needs to be done.

About the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Since it was established by Congress in 1984, the organization has operated the toll-free 24-hour national missing children’s hotline which has handled more than 2,377,000 calls. It has assisted law enforcement in the recovery of more than 138,500 children. The organization’s CyberTipline has handled more than 690,700 reports of child sexual exploitation and its Child Victim Identification Program has reviewed and analyzed more than 22,983,300 child pornography images and videos. The organization works in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice’s office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

To learn more about NCMEC, call its toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 1-800-THE-LOST or visit its web site at http://www.missingkids.com.

New Life

Arrested when he was 16-years-old, a child rapist has been released from a mental health facility in Sanford, Fl. after serving time for sexually assaullting little boys in his father’s church. Seminole County Judge O.H. Eaton Jr. told the court “I don’t think there’s grounds to hold him any longer.”

SANFORD A judge freed Kareem Merthie, 26, who had been locked up for nearly a decade for raping children, but the celebration for his family quickly turned tragic.

Before the judge released him, Merthie’s mother, Ruth Merthie, collapsed in the hallway after stepping out.

She was rushed to Central Florida Regional Hospital where she died.

Two medical experts said Merthie is not an active sexually violent predator.

Merthie preyed on as many as 20 children. He’s the son of a minister, and most of the rapes happened at his father’s church, New Life Word Center.

If he has been locked up, away from children, wouldn’t he be by default not be an active sexually violent predator? Not everyone agrees he no longer poses a threat. “Child rapist wants out of Sanford mental hospital“.

Tampa psychologist Michael Gamache, a state witness, filed a report in March, saying that Merthie had admitted victimizing 20 children, both boys and girls.

“Due to the sheer volume of Mr. Merthie’s prior sexual acts, I believe he remains a high risk or a danger to reoffend” but not more so than “the average sex offender,” Gamache wrote.

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