Of all the questions that cross parents’ minds when they hear about child abductions, the most common question may be, “how can I stop this from happening to my child?”
TIPS FOR PARENTS TO KEEP CHILDREN SAFER WHILE IN PUBLIC
- Keep children with you at all times while shopping
- Accompany and supervise children in public facilities, including restrooms
- Have a plan in case you become separated, including a pre-designated spot to meet
- Teach children to look for people who can help, such as a uniformed security officer
- Remind children to remain in the area where they become separated
- Never dress children in clothing that displays their first or last names
- Use the word ‘no’ as a safety term
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ATTEMPTED ABDUCTIONS
Parents should learn when and where kids are most vulnerable in order to better protect them. In an analysis of attempted abductions, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children found that many:
- Involved a suspect driving a vehicle
- Occurred between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
- Occurred when the child was traveling to or away from school
- Involved girls and children between the ages of 10 and 14
TEACH CHILDREN TO TAKE ACTION
NCMEC’s review revealed one extremely important fact: 83% of children who escaped their would-be abductors did something proactive. They walked/ran away, yelled, kicked, or pulled away.
This means the best thing a child can do if someone tries to abduct them is take action instead of being passive or polite.
Use this information to set up a safety plan for your kids – and don’t forget to include teens in these conversations! You can:
- Point out places they can go for help when walking to places like school and the park
- Remind them to travel and stay with a group
- Warn them about accepting rides or changing plans without your permission
- Teach them the tricks would-be abductors use, such as offering money or asking for help
- Encourage them to tell a trusted adult whenever anything or anyone makes them uncomfortable
When it comes to keeping your child safe, YOU are your child’s best resource! And as always, please contact the police if you experience or notice anything or anyone acting suspiciously around children.
**WFPD Official Press Release**
Suspect in Friday’s Shooting of 2 Teens ARRESTED
On 09-04-16, at approx 1:22pm, following a citizen tip, officers made a traffic stop on a suspicious vehicle matching Friday’s description in the 4700 blk of Southwest Parkway. The driver of the vehicle was identified as 20 year old Kody Lott. Lott was arrested on scene for a separate charge (Prohibited Weapon) and transported to the WFPD station for questioning about the shooting, where he confessed to the murder of Lauren Landavazo and the shooting of Makayla Smith. Lott is currently in the Wichita County Jail on the following charges: Murder, Aggravated Assault, and Prohibited Weapon.
The WFPD would like to thank everyone involved in this case from the officers working it to the media and citizens that helped disseminate and share information leading to this arrest.
The Patsy’s House Children’s Advocacy Center is kicking off their annual Pinwheel Campaign on Saturday, April 2, 2016 from Noon until 3:00 pm at Patterson Honda located at 319 Central Freeway East at Jacksboro Hwy. 1,724 pinwheels will be in the ground at this location, each representing a child the CAC has provided services to in 2015. For every $20 donated to support Patsy’s House, one pinwheel will be pulled from the ground. The public is invited to stop by and make a donation to this worthy cause of helping to end child abuse. The Pinwheel Program is an annual fundraiser for our local Patsy’s House.
Members of the Wichita Falls Police Officers’ Association will be on hand cooking hotdogs, free while they last! The Wichita Falls Police Department staffs four full-time officers at Patsy’s House to investigate crimes against children.
“The pinwheel connotes whimsy and childlike notions. In essence, it has come to serve as the physical embodiment, or reminder, of the great childhoods we want for all children.”
Throughout the year the Wichita Falls Police Department conducts a local sex offender compliance check to ensure all offenders are in compliance with their court orders. This includes home visits. The purpose of the check is to confirm that all registered sex offenders are in compliance with their court orders, to include residing at their reported address. There are currently 181 registered sex offenders inside the Wichita Falls city limits, all of which have been checked and are in compliance. Some of these offenders are currently on probation and the Probation Department performs their checks as well.
You can find a list of registered sex offenders in your neighborhood at http://bit.ly/1pZsjJG
Be safe this Halloween by planning your child’s route and knowing where they are at all times.
Amber Witte, a WFISD teacher, turned herself in to the Wichita County Jail today on an arrest warrant for Improper Relationship Between Educator and Student. On 6/5/15 WFPD Detectives were notified about an improper sexual relationship between Witte and a student. A warrant was issued for her arrest. Her bond was set at $5,000.