Fingerprinted for Safety
They were not school pictures but kids smiled for information parents hope they'll never need.
"It's been in the news lately, the kidnapping of the two young boys, and I think it is a concern of every parent you know and when it's so simple you know I just think it is a wise thing to do," said Paige Toates, mother of three boys.
Parents like Toates hope this identification information could bring back any of her three sons should they ever go missing. As kids go through the stations, organizers say current information is key.
"All we're doing is providing the tools to the parents and the authorities if a child should be presumed missing or abducted," said MCF Unit Technical Adviser Brent Hunt.
Brent Hunt is from St. Joseph. He's helping make one technology available to more mid-Missouri communities.
"One child recovered through the program is a success," he said.
Hunt and the volunteers work to help parents use the information to keep the kids safe.
"Authorities recommend that you take one of these and drop it in the kids backpack, because if a child is abducted one of the first things they find is the kid's backpack," Hunt added.
Parents leave with two laminated id cards and a computer disc with fingerprints, digital photographs and the child's personal information on it. And mothers like Toates say the short stop is worth it.
"You never know if something crazy might happen and I just think that if you have an opportunity to do it, why not?" she added.
The program is offered free of charge, and they told KOMU all the information they collect, with the exception of what they give to the parents is destroyed at the end of the day. They said this information is kept secure on this disc so it doesn't get in the wrong hands but in the event of an emergency the disc was able to generate an Amber Alert within 42 seconds.
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