Sheriff’s Office urges use of identity kits
Having a child disappear, even momentarily, can be a horrifying experience for a parent.
Fortunately in most instances, children are found in short order, but there are cases, such as 16-year-old Karlie Gusé who disappeared two years ago from Chalfant, where that doesn’t happen.
Recently, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office sent home free child safety identity kids with elementary school students across the county.
The kits help offer parents and law enforcement the ability to identify a child in an emergency, according to the county.
The kits contain a bag to sample a child’s DNA and a self-rolling ink strip for fingerprints. There is also a booklet to note medical information, description and a recent photo that can be handed to deputies should a child go missing.
“Should anything happen, and your child goes missing, we want to be prepared to respond quickly with accurate knowledge about your child,” said Sheriff Dan Coverley. “We hope the kits don’t have to be used, but in those critical minutes and hours after a child is reported missing, it will serve law enforcement as the best tool for gathering information quickly about your child. That’s why I am urging parents to look out for these kits in your kids backpacks, fill them out and maintain them.”
How to Obtain an ID Kit:
- If your child is in a Douglas County elementary school, a kit will be sent home with them, please check their backpack
How to Use an ID Kit:
- Start by filling out each section of the Child’s Personal Information
- Insert an updated photo of your child, fill out the date and age the child is in photograph
- Indicate child’s characteristics
- Using the ink strip, follow the fingerprinting grid
- Collect 20 strands of hair for DNA sample, store in freezer to preserve
- Have your child’s dentist complete a dental chart
- Review the child safety tips
- Keep the kit in a secure, accessible location
According to the National Crime Information Center, 87,438 people were reported missing in 2019, 35 percent of whom were juveniles under the age of 18.
For more information about Karlie’s disappearance visit https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/kidnap/karlie-lain-guse. Anyone with information should contact the Mono County Sheriff’s Office or the FBI.