Senate panel approves Thompson bill to create child abduction response teams

Wednesday, 28 February 2024 21:05

Senate panel approves Thompson bill to create child abduction response teams Featured

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OKLAHOMA CITY – The Senate Appropriations Committee on Wednesday unanimously approved a bill from Sen. Roger Thompson, R-Okemah, to better mobilize law enforcement when a child is abducted. 

Thompson’s Senate Bill 1407 would authorize the formation of child abduction response teams to quickly engage federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement entities when a minor age 15 or younger is abducted. 

Under the bill, a law enforcement agency that receives a verified report of a child abduction will notify the response team’s point of contact within four hours. Law enforcement agencies would also be authorized to use automated license plate readers as they search for the child. 

“Time is of the essence when a child is abducted,” Thompson said. “This bill will help law enforcement entities at all levels of government develop a quick and effective response to get a missing child home safely.”

Thompson said his bill would allow Oklahoma to form child abduction response teams similar to those operating in Georgia. 

SB 1407 would appropriate $300,000 so a state coordinator could be hired to oversee the teams that will develop rapid response strategies in conjunction with all levels of law enforcement. 

The bill passed the Appropriations Committee, which Thompson chairs, on a 20-0 vote. It now awaits a vote of the full Senate. 

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