No Waiting Period to Report a person Missing in South Africa
The South African Police Service has recently issued an advisory to the General Public and their own Members that there is no waiting period to report a person missing. See Official Report here
"It is critical to report someone missing as soon as they are discovered to be missing. If your loved one follows a routine, and you know that they are at home at 5pm, and they have been doing this for many years, it would be unwise to wait a full 24 hours to report them missing. " says Durban Community Police Forum Member Denzil Davan.
"Is unfortunate that we are bombarded with US movies and Fiction, where their missing persons policies are different from ours. Sadly, when we are exposed to details from these foreign sources, we think they are Universal Policies and we treat them as fact." says Davan
Time is always of the essence in emergencies.
If someone has gone missing, the reporter of this is requested to :
- Report the case to SAPS. Produce a recent photograph of the missing person, if available, and basic information about the missing person. The absence of a photograph does not necessarily mean that an investigation cannot be conducted. It only means that the help of the general public, by distributing flyers etc, will have to wait until a photograph is found or an Identikit is compiled.
- Complete and sign an SAPS 55(A) form, including the "Acceptance of Liability" part, which will help to safeguard the SAPS from hoax reports and put the responsibility on the reporter to inform the SAPS should such a missing person return voluntarily. It also indemnifies the SAPS to distribute the photograph and information of the missing person.
- Stay in contact with the Investigating Official of the Missing Person's case and to forward any information that might become available to him/her as soon as possible
There are many organisations that are available to distribute information on the Internet and Social Media.
At www.crimenet.co.za collaborate with The Pink Ladies and Missing Children South Africa to assist with missing Children and Adults. They will only engage on a case if a Case No is acquired from SAPS with an official SAPS 55(A) form completed.
Contact Details are :
- The Pink Ladies - 24 Hour SMS : 072 214 7439 (only to be used after SAPS contacted)
E-mail: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
- Missing Children SA - 24 Hour Emergency : 072 MISSING (072 6477464)
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