Over 15K Ohioan children reported missing in 2022; 4 found dead

In recognition of National Missing Children’s Day, held annually on Thursday, May 25, the 2022 Ohio Missing Children report was released. The report informed of the over 15,000 children declared missing with four found dead.

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The Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost released the 2022 Ohio Missing Children report on National Missing Children’s Day to inform of the survey conducted.

The report documented 20,617 people missing in 2022—1,603 more than the year before, a spokesperson for the attorney general’s office said.

Of the total number of people declared missing, 15,555 were children, broken down to 8,224 girls and 7,331 boys.

8,525 missing children cases involved a runaway where a child left their home without permission and stayed away overnight.

34 of the cases involved an abduction from a noncustodial parent. In many of the abduction cases, the noncustodial parent was unable to see the child under custody or visitation rights due to a parent or other supervising party keeping or concealing the child.

5 cases had a stranger abduct the child instead.

Although thousands of children were reported missing throughout the year, authorities were able to recover 96 percent of them by the end of the year, totaling 14,940 children. However, this left 615 still missing into 2023.

11 AMBER Alerts and four Endangered Missing Child Alerts were issued through the recording year to recover some of the children. All of the children who had an alert sent out for them were found by authorities.

Four of the children claimed to be missing were later found dead, according to open source data observed by the attorney general’s office.

The Ohio Missing Persons Unit within the Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) contributed to finding the missing children in the state.

“Nothing terrifies a parent more than the thought of losing a child,” Yost said. “Thankfully, when a child goes missing, Ohio law enforcement rises to the task and often quickly reunites missing kids. My heart is with the parents whose child hasn’t yet come home.”

Anyone with information about a missing child was asked to contact the 24-hour toll-free hotline at 800-325-5604.

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