Greenbrier County

Law enforcement thanks public for Amber Alert response

Police not only rely on local law enforcement when an Amber Alert is activated, but they also turn to the public for help finding the missing person. Social Media has become instrumental in helping police find suspects. This was the case for the Amber Alert issued for a Greenbrier County teen. 

Within minutes of the Amber Alert, people posted all over social media. The Greenbrier County Sheriff's Office asked people to share and send in any information that could help find the missing girl. Bruce Sloan, Greenbrier County Sheriff, said this is one of the reasons law enforcement will issue the alert in the first place.

"Any time there is an Amber Alert issued that really raises the awareness to the public because those are only issued in the serious situations," Sloan said.

Hundreds of people shared the post and pictures on social media, or called into the Sheriff's office with information. Sloan said deputies spent a majority of their time going through all of the tips they received, which helped them track down the victim and two suspects.

"The fact that there was so much press coverage with this and there was so many people that called in, that is so beneficial to us because we rely so much on the public for information in solving cases," Sloan explained.

Around 48 hours after the Amber Alert was issued, the missing teen was found and able to go home to her family. Sloan said this was thanks to the internet and the response from the public.

"There are obviously negatives associated with social media, but it can be a very useful tool for law enforcement," Sloan said.

The Greenbrier County Sheriff also reminded people to not be afraid to call with any tips that could help the investigation. He said any information could help. 

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