How common are missing children and abductions?

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - There were more than 465,676 entries in the National Crime Information Center for missing children in 2016, according to the FBI.

According to its website, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) helped law enforcement and families with more than 20,500 cases of missing children last year.

NCMEC said of those cases:

  • 90% were endangered runaways
  • 6% were family abductions
  • 1%  were lost, injured or otherwise missing children
  • 1% were nonfamily abductions
  • 2% were critically missing young adults (ages 18-20)

NCMEC has also analyzed more than ten years of abduction and attempted abduction incidents known to the organization.

  • 70% of attempted abductions involve the suspect driving a vehicle.
  • 34% occurred between 2:00-7:0pm, the time frame when kids are out of school and supervision may be less likely
  • 20% of confirmed incidents involved a sex crime of either sexual assault or indecent exposure
  • 65% of attempted abudctions involve a female child
  • 37% of the children are between 10 and 14 years old

The most common methods an abductor uses to lure a child include offering him or her a ride, offering candy or sweets, asking the child questions, offering the child money or using an animal or ruse of a missing animal to engage the child.

Click here for tips for preventing abduction. 

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