COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The number and proportion of Ohio’s missing children gradually rose in 2022, a new report suggests.
Of the 20,617 people who were reported missing in Ohio last year, 15,555 of them — or 75% — were children, up from about 73% in 2021, according to the state’s annual Missing Children Clearinghouse Report released by Attorney General Dave Yost’s Office on Thursday.
Law enforcement authorities reported a 96% solve rate last year, meaning a total of 14,940 missing children were recovered safely by the year’s end, the attorney general’s office said. In 2021, 97% were found within the same year.
"The success rate, which is in line with previous years, stands as a testament to the perseverance and passing of Ohio's outstanding law enforcement professionals," Yost said in a letter to top state officials. "Still, there's work to be done. Kids run away every day, and abductions, sadly, are a fact of life."
The majority of cases, 8,525, involved a runaway, where a child left home without permission and stays elsewhere overnight. Thirty-four involved an abduction by a noncustodial parent, and five involved kidnapping by a stranger, the report found.
Of the children at the center of 11 Amber Alerts and four Endangered Missing Child Alerts released by the state last year, each child was found and safely returned.
To report a missing person, contact the attorney general's Missing Persons Unit 24-hour hotline at 800-325-5604.
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