Lake Twp: Police department renews missing children program

Staff Writer

. The Lake Township Police Department will be renewing its efforts to establish a missing children and teens program that had been put on hold due to the pandemic.
Chief Mark Hummer said the program will be led by the department’s Community Policing and Crime Prevention Division and targets the seven truck refueling stations in the township.
“We will be placing posters of missing children and teens primarily from northwest Ohio in lockage display cases at each of the seven truck refueling stations,” the chief noted. “The reason we’ll be making these businesses the focal point of the program is because many missing kids end up in these kinds of places, and customers of the businesses travel a lot and are more likely to have seen the youngsters.”
It is hoped truckers and others visiting the fueling stations might recognize a child or teen and contact authorities to provide that information. The missing youngsters are more likely to find themselves victims of human trafficking.
“Because we have the Ohio Turnpike interchange in our township, we know there is also a good possibility some missing children could end up here,” the chief said.
A recent donation from the Lutheran Social Services of Northwest Ohio will be used to purchase the remaining display boards needed to launch the project.
“Thanks to this generous donation, we can now purchase the remaining number of display boards we need to put one in each of the truck refueling stations in the township,” Chief Hummer noted.
“We have garnered the support of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office for this project, and we want to collaborate with other agencies as well. We have contacted the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Truckers Against (Human) Trafficking, and the Toledo Trucking Association to ask for their support,” he said.
The chief also pointed out the department has received support for the program from Ed Nagle of Nagle Trucking, a prominent Lake Township business.
Keeping posters on the bulletin boards fresh and relevant will be the responsibility of the police department’s crime prevention and community policing officer.
“He will keep track of the posters and rotate them on a regular basis to optimize the exposure of all the missing children. He will remove posters of those who have been located and display new ones for those kids recently reported missing.”
Each board will have attached to it a sign informing those who see it that the establishment is joining the police department in the effort to locate the missing youths. The sign will also have a phone number to report any information they may have.
For further information on the program, contact Ron Craig, crime prevention officer/ community policing officer, at 419-481-6354.


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