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Amber Alert System raises questions, receives praise | Crime

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Amber Alert System raises questions, receives praise
Crime

SACRAMENTO, CA - The latest Amber Alert catches the eye of many drivers thanks to highway signs and high tech digital billboards.

Exactly how helpful have amber alerts been though since 2002 when it was first activated?

"We've been tremendously successful. We've had 175 activations and recovered 213 children," Assistant Chief of the California Highway Patrol Ike Tani said.

Authorities also caught more than 100 suspects.

During the past three years, 24 Amber Alerts were sent out statewide each year, even more kids are found. In many cases, authorities catch the suspects.

The California Highway Patrol said it's been a great service, but not perfect. In fact, some people question why the CHP doesn't issue Amber Alerts sooner.

"Normally, that has to do with investigating agency, the investigating agency has to put the criteria together to make that determination," Tani said.

A closer look at the CHP web page about Amber Alerts shows a grim statistic. According to the Department of Justice, 74 percent of the children who were abducted and later found murdered were killed within three hours of being taken. It's a sign that every second counts.

"We are dealing with Amber Alert, our greatest hope is we are always going to recover the children alive," Tani said. "Speed is essential, the sooner we get reports, the sooner we get the info out there, the greater the chance of recovery."

By Suzanne Phan, sphan@news10.net

Twitter: @suzannephan

Facebook: SuzannePhanNews10 

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