Editorial: Best search is local search
As soon as the public learned that 11-year-old James Timothy Greene was missing from his Salisbury home, people began to ask why no Amber Alert had been issued ó a logical question until you take a closer look at the intention of Amber Alerts.
Timothy appears to have left the home he shares with his adoptive parents on his own. No signs of foul play have surfaced, but the family went all weekend without hearing from him or knowing his whereabouts.
Thatís troubling, and everyone should help look for young Timothy ó and hope that this is not an Amber Alert situation.
Amber Alerts focus on children believed to have been abducted, like 9-year-old Amber Hagerman. Fifteen years ago this month, a person was seen abducting Amber as she rode her bicycle in the parking lot of an abandoned grocery store in east Arlington, Texas.
ěShe kind of became Arlingtonís own child at that time. And Iíll tell ya it galvanized that city in a way that you wouldnít have thought a large city could be,î Tarrant County Sheriff Dee Anderson recently told a reporter. At the time Amber went missing, Anderson was the spokesperson for the Arlington Police Department.
Amber, unfortunately, was found dead four days later. Her killer has never been found. The trauma of her disappearance prompted the establishment of the Amber Alert system, first in Texas and then nationwide. The ěAmberî stands for Americaís Missing Broadcast Emergency Response ó a series of public warnings through radio, television, cell phones and state highway postings about the disappearance of children ó but itís hard not to think about Amber Hagerman when you hear the term.
To date, the alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of more than 500 children, and Facebook recently announced it was teaming up with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to create Amber Alert pages when a child is abducted.
By the time you read this, letís hope Timothy Greene is safe at home and people have stopped mentioning his name in connection with Amber Alert. His family put out the word that he was missing over the weekend, and police joined in issuing a press release Sunday night. The best search is a local search. Letís hope Timothy is home soon.