Nonfamily Abducted Children: National Estimates and Characteristics

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Drawing from data compiled in the 1999 National Incidence Studies of Missing, Abducted, Runaway and Thrownaway Children, the authors break down the different missing child scenarios considered nonfamily abductions. These are cases when somebody not known to the family takes a child by physical force or threat and detains the child for an hour or more.

There were 58,000 overall nonfamily abductions in 1999, with teenagers by far the most frequent victims. Only 115 of these were classified as “stereotypical abductions”: perpetrated by a slight acquaintance or stranger who detains the child overnight, transports the child more than 50 miles or kills the victim. In such cases, 40 percent of the children were killed and 4 percent were never found. 15 pages. Free. Juvenile Justice Clearinghouse, P.O. Box 6000, Rockville, MD 20849. (800) 851-3240,
– Mary Tess Driver, Della Mosley, Andrew Beadle, Patrick Boyle