Finding A Missing Person: What Are The Critical Steps?

If someone you know has appeared to have gone missing, it can be a very serious and traumatic event – especially if they didn’t leave any traces or hints behind. When someone disappears, it could be due to a variety of reasons. Maybe they vanished on purpose in order to try and start a new life with a new identity. Maybe an accident occurred while they were traveling, and no one has found them yet. Or, it could be something much more daunting such as a kidnapping.

Missing persons cases require almost immediate attention. While many law enforcement departments require 48 hours to pass before considering a person missing, it is important to know what other options are out there to try and figure out what happened to your missing loved one.

Below are some of the steps that you should take in order to start searching for the missing individual:

Report the Missing Person to Local Authorities

Even if authorities require a certain amount of time to pass prior to considering the case to be a missing persons case, you should still report the missing person to your local authorities as soon as you become concerned. This way, the police are aware of the situation and can keep a lookout for potential hints regarding this specific situation.

Evaluate Any Social Media Accounts

With social media being so prevalent nowadays, it is ideal to do a quick check through all of the missing person’s social media accounts. Look for certain clues as to any recent posts that may indicate any trouble, any travel plans, and so on. You should also review when they were last active to see if they have been active elsewhere since the time you became concerned of their disappearance. In addition, you may be able to see where they last posted from in regard to location if their privacy settings allow for this.

Call Surrounding Hospitals and Prisons

Another great step to take is to locate all hospitals, prisons and jails in the initial surrounding area, and start making some calls. Then, branch out from the initial location and call hospitals and jails in a mile radius outside of the initial location. If there was an accident, for example, then the missing person may be in a hospital somewhere being treated so these are always good places to start with.

Contact Friends & Loved Ones

This is most definitely one of the initial steps that you should take when it comes to finding a missing person. Often, there are times where a missing person may contact a specific person giving their current location that they didn’t tell anyone else. In addition, they may have said something to someone prior to their disappearance that can give authorities some clues as to where to search next.

Spread the Word Online

The internet has helped give plenty of clues and tips when it comes to missing persons. Try posting about the missing person on your social media accounts, in forums, on websites, and so on to see if anyone has seen or heard from your loved one. In addition, there are now online communities that have a goal of finding missing persons. Make sure you submit information to these sites as well.

Hire a Private Missing Person Investigator

This is an ideal step to take. While authorities may already be looking into the case, a private missing persons investigator can take on your case and put all of their efforts and energy into finding the missing person in question. Authorities may have multiple cases they are working on, which limits time and attention for your specific case. Private investigators for missing persons have the skills and experience to assist you in finding your missing loved one.

A Final Word

As a final word, it is a traumatic event when a loved one goes missing. Make sure you take the steps that are crucial in finding tips and hints as to where your loved one may be. The steps above are just a few that can assist you in finding valuable information to help find the missing person in question.

Author Bio:

This post was written by Specialized Investigation Consultants. Specialized Investigations Consultants is a professional Miami-based investigation company founded, owned and operated by current and retired law enforcement professionals. Our Miami-based investigations business serves all of South Florida with over 100 years of combined State, Federal and Local law enforcement experience.

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