Remember this girl? The one who’s not missing? The NCMEC had promised to remove her from their site after I called them about it two. fracking. months. ago.
I officially give up.
So I wrote up a runaway case off the NCMEC. Her name is Breanna. After I wrote up the basics from her poster, I was doing more research on the case for details to add to her casefile. She wasn’t in NamUs. I soon discovered why: an article saying she was found safe in August 2016.
I called the NCMEC about this and yup, she was found safe almost two years ago. But she’s still on their website. This is like the sixth time this has happened.
NamUs did have another Breanna listed, a young woman, so I decided to post that case instead. And the same thing happened: I wrote up the case with the NamUs details, then on further research discovered this Breanna had been found murdered in January 2017, only a few months after she disappeared. And she is still on NamUs.
I am seriously fed up.
Remember this “white” girl?
Yeah, a blog reader contacted the NCMEC about this and she’s black.
Now they’re going to have to correct their little boo-boo that has filtered down to multiple other databases.
Garbage in, garbage out.
Remember my entry of June 6? Yeah, it just happened again.
The NCMEC says yet another young girl has been missing for over two years and it turns out she got found quite a long time ago, something the NCMEC itself is aware of, so…
It makes me wonder how many OTHER kids on their site were actually recovered a long time ago.
Ima have to write them a letter or something because this is just stupid.
So I added a runaway case from the NCMEC to Charley today and then had to pull it down within about five minutes.
I began to smell a rat, checked Facebook, and found what I’m pretty sure is the girl’s Facebook page — an active one. Last posting was two days ago. If it is her, she’s going by a nickname for her legal name, and she’s put on a lot of weight and changed her hair significantly. But the Facebook girl’s nose looked exactly the same, the page said she lives in Cleveland, and the NCMEC poster noted that she may use the same nickname the Facebook page was under.
I called up the NCMEC hotline number (which I call often enough to have it in my cell phone contacts), to tell them about the active Facebook page. They told me she had been recovered already.
SO WHY IS SHE STILL LISTED AS A MISSING CHILD ON THEIR SITE?
I understand that no database is perfect — certainly mine isn’t — but this kind of thing really should not happen. It wasn’t even that the NCMEC didn’t realize she wasn’t missing anymore; they did know. But they forgot to pull her poster.
Their right hand doesn’t know what their left is doing. If I hadn’t seen that girl’s Facebook page — and, being as it’s under her nickname, it’s not super obvious — and decided to call it in, who knows how much longer she would have been erroneously listed as missing.
This kind of stuff is more than just annoying to people like me, it can cause a lot of trouble for the person in question. Suppose this young lady decides to apply for colleges or jobs or something, and gets rejected because people Google her name and think she’s a missing child?
The NCMEC is a private organization, but it is funded largely by grants from the U.S. Department of Justice, and it has a budget in the millions. It is also the most famous missing children’s nonprofit in the country. This kind of carelessness from them is unacceptable.
NamUs has the case of Tebble Anita Garrett, with a reasonable amount of detail — tattoo description, several aliases, was pregnant — but there was (and is, as of this writing) no photo on the casefile. In January I was able to get a photo of her from Newspapers.com and so I added her to Charley, but the photo was a few years out of date — Tebble, it seems, had been a chronic runaway, and the photo I had was from an article about one of her disappearances two or three years prior to 1988.
But yay, the NCMEC has just put up a poster for her! With another photo, presumably more recent!
(And the poster, I note, has a different listed date and place of Tebble’s disappearance than NamUs does. Sometimes NamUs gives the date a person was reported missing as the date of disappearance — they’re hardly the only source that does that either. Given Tebble’s status as a chronic runaway, it’s possible her family didn’t report her missing for six weeks because they expected her to return on her own. Or it’s possible they didn’t report her missing at first, then couldn’t quite remember when she was last seen. Or it’s possible she disappeared from Easley, South Carolina on September 7, then was sighted in Pickens, South Carolina on October 18. The cities are only seven to ten miles apart, after all.)
Anyway. I’m so happy they added her. Tebble’s been missing for almost thirty years now and I really LOVE IT when the NCMEC adds new-old cases. It makes my day, actually. Especially new-old cases I haven’t heard of before. Recently they did Henrietta Geck Cruz Avila, and I was able to get some additional info from the Newspapers.com archive (I LOVE THAT ARCHIVE, thanks for paying for the subscription, you-know-who-you-are) about her case. It reminds me a bit of Beverly Sharpman‘s.
Anyway. Thanks, NCMEC.