OPP touts success of Amber Alert Program

An Amber Alert is activated in this undated image.

Provincial police are highlighting what they are saying was a successful year for the Amber Alert program in Ontario.

Police released numbers regarding the program on Monday, which was the anniversary of the abduction and murder of nine-year-old Amber Hagerman in Texas, who the program is named after.

Amber Alert programs are used in Canada, the United States, and several other countries around the world.

According to police there were eight Amber Alerts in Ontario in 2019 involving a total of 12 abducted children.

All eight alerts were involving suspects related to the abducted children. Of the 12 abducted children 11 were located safely.

Sadly in February an 11-year-old girl was eventually found dead in her father’s home. Her father was arrested shortly after and is facing first-degree murder charges.

Amber Alerts are sent out through Canada’s emergency alerting system.

In the past, various police forces have noted receiving angry calls and messages from citizens for the disruptions.

Police say that once a child is abducted there is no way to determine the exact location or direction the abductor is headed which is why the entire province is alerted.

In April an Amber Alert concluded with the suspect and child being located 290 kilometres away, while one in May concluded 400 kilometres away.

In Ontario only the OPP have the power to issue Amber Alerts, all other alerts are issued by the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre.