McCOOK, Nebraska -- Officials considered issuing an Amber Alert for Kailee Clapp, but didn't have the time or information that would have made it appropriate, according to the McCook Police Chief.
An Amber Alert couldn't be issued because the case lacked key triggers, Police Chief Ike Brown said..
"One of the first items discussed [this weekend] was the AMBER Alert," Brown said, "but we did not have all the information required to issue one until we no longer needed it. We need a suspect, description of vehicle, and direction of travel on top of the other requirements [to activate the Amber Alert]. It happened so close together in time."
"The Amber Alert program is a voluntary partnership between law-enforcement agencies, broadcasters, transportation agencies, and the wireless industry, to activate an urgent bulletin in the most serious child-abduction cases.
The goal of an Amber Alert is to "instantly galvanize the entire community to assist in the search for and the safe recovery of the child." according to www.amberalert.gov.
Amber Alert plans are different by state and in some areas by counties and cities. There are 34 local plans in eight states, 27 regional plans spanning eight states, and all 50 states plus Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands have statewide plans that are able to be enacted.
Nebraska has a single-system that spans the entire state. The Nebraska Amber Plan requires law enforcement to meet specific guidelines in order to issue an alert for a child abduction:
* the person is 17 years old or younger
* police have reason to believe the child is in danger of serious bodily harm or death
* there is sufficient information available concerning the suspected abductor that the public can respond
* the notifying law enforcement agency has participated in AMBER training for purposes of issuing AMBER Alerts.
* The plan is not intended for use in runaway or child custody situations.
If the guidelines are met, the local law enforcement agency contacts the Nebraska State Patrol to request the activation of the Amber Plan.
The NSP verifies that the guidelines have been met then activates the system through the Nebraska Educational Telecommunications, which is then broadcasted over the State Emergency Alert System.
Once the initial EAS broadcast has occurred, the information is sent to all radio and television stations in Nebraska, and participating stations will then re-broadcast the information at regular intervals until the alert is canceled.