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Many people turn to private investigators for missing person investigations due to failures of law enforcement to fully investigate or even take a report of a missing friend or relative. As an industry leader in private investigations spaces, the OPS Consulting and Investigative Services private detective agency in Phoenix consists of retired law enforcement personnel who have real-world experience searching for and locating missing persons. If you have exhausted all law enforcement options and/or want to take your missing persons investigation into your own hands, then contact the missing person investigator team in Phoenix at OPS today (623) 263-2900. We are available for hire to guide you through the missing person investigation and can put together investigative personnel nationwide (and even internationally) to run down leads and help you take control of your missing person investigation. The missing person investigator team in Phoenix at OPS has access to cutting edge technology and can help you start your investigation somewhere.

As a completely free resource OPS is providing you with some helpful tips on missing persons investigations. The information on this website is NOT A SUBSTITUTE for law enforcement reporting. IF YOU BELIEVE A PERSON, IS MISSING, CONTACTING LAW ENFORCEMENT IMMEDIATELY IS ALWAYS THE BEST COURSE OF ACTION.

Please understand that every law enforcement agency will handle missing persons calls differently. Some may not take a report right away and some may not take a report at all. To increase your odds of locating the missing person your goal with law enforcement should be to ensure the person is entered into the National Computer Information Center (“NCIC”) database. NCIC is where the national “Missing Person File” is electronically maintained and is accessible by over 18,000 federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial criminal justice agencies in all 50 states, U.S. territories, and Canada. The sooner someone is entered into NCIC, the higher the odds of locating someone. NCIC participation is voluntary and varies from state to state, EXCEPT missing persons under age 21.

Under U.S. Code Title 34, Section 41307 (Suzanne’s Law) a record for a missing person under the age of 21 MUST BE ENTERED into NCIC. Under H.R. 4772 (the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006) the NCIC entry must be WITHIN 2 HOURS of receipt of the minimum data needed to enter an NCIC record.

The minimum information you must know to provide to law enforcement for NCIC inclusions is as follows:

  1. Name of the Missing Person (full name is best)
  2. Sex (should be their current legal sex as determined by a government issued documents such as a birth certificate or driver license)
  3. Date of Birth
  4. Date of Emancipation (if applicable)
  5. Height
  6. Weight
  7. Eye Color
  8. Hair Color
  9. Missing Person Type
    1. Disability - a person of any age who is missing and under proven physical/mental disability or is senile, thereby subjecting him/herself or others to personal and immediate danger.
    2. Endangered - a person of any age who is missing under circumstances indicating that his/her physical safety may be in danger.
    3. Involuntary - a person of any age who is missing under circumstances indicating that the disappearance may not have been voluntary, for example, abduction or kidnapping.
    4. Juvenile - a person who is missing and not declared emancipated as defined by the laws of his/her state of residence and does not meet any of the entry criteria set forth in the Disability, Endangered, Involuntary, or Catastrophe Victim categories.
    5. Catastrophe Victim - a person of any age who is missing after a catastrophe.
    6. Other - a person not meeting the criteria for entry in any other category who is missing and 1) for whom there is a reasonable concern for his/her safety or 2) who is under age 21 and declared emancipated by the laws of his/her state of residence.
  10. If over 21 years old, at least 1 numeric identifier.
    1. Date of Birth
    2. FBI Number
    3. Miscellaneous Number
    4. Social Security Number
    5. Driver License Number (sometimes referred to as an “operator number”)
    6. License Plate Number
    7. Vehicle Data (such as make, model, year, etc).

If law enforcement, refuses to enter a person under age 21 into NCIC, then request to speak to a supervisor at that law enforcement agency. If after speaking with a supervisor, the law enforcement agency still refuses to enter a person under age 21, then escalate the matter to your state police agency. In many states, the police agency usually controls access to NCIC for all other law enforcement agencies in that state. If that fails, then contact NCIC directly at (304) 625-2000 for help. NCIC is open Monday through Friday between 09:00 AM – 5:00 PM (EST). Please understand that NCIC will not manually enter the information for you, but they should be able to provide you on guidance on how to report non-compliance with the NCIC rules. They should be only contacted as a last resort and only for when law enforcement refuses to enter someone under 21 years of age.

The important part of any missing persons investigations is to act quickly. While there maybe many reasons why someone may be “overdue” opposed to missing, OPS’s missing person investigators in Phoenix believe it is better to err on the side of caution and report anything that is out of character for the people in your life. OPS can assist in helping organize community searches, facilitating private search and rescue operations, and other critical tasks to ensure the greatest chance of solving your missing persons case.

Legal Disclaimer: The information on this page is current as of the date of uploading and may not contain all current laws or regulations. The information contained in this website or any attachment(s) is not intended to be legal advice and is intended to be for general reference purposes only. Do not confuse general reference materials with specific legal advice. You should always consult an attorney for specific legal advice regarding your individual situation.

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