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Montclair Township

FAQ
AMBER Alert FAQs
Amber AlertThe AMBER ALERT Plan is a voluntary, cooperative program between the law enforcement community and the broadcast media to send an emergency alert, called “AMBER Alert,” to the public when a child has been abducted and it is believed that the child’s life is in grave danger.

Once notified of an authenticated abduction, the New Jersey State Police contacts the broadcast media, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), as well as all listed AMBER Alert partners. NOAA immediately interrupts radio and television programming to broadcast information about the abducted child, and/or the abductor, by activating a prearranged distinctive tone, followed by “This is an AMBER Alert.”

TRAK II/AMBER Alert system

The Montclair Police Department is equipped with a TRAX II computer that is connected to the Garden State Network, which is a private network that connects all New Jersey Law Enforcement Agencies. The TRAX II computer enables the Montclair Police to e-mail or fax missing person flyers, wanted posters, etc to any police agency in New Jersey. All AMBER Alert requests from the Montclair Police are entered into the TRAK II computer and sent to the N.J.S.P. Missing Persons Unit before an AMBER Alert can be issued.

For more information on the New Jersey AMBER Alert Plan, go to www.njsp.org

Why was the AMBER Alert created?

{mosimage}The AMBER Plan was created in 1996 as a powerful legacy to 9-year-old Amber Hagerman, a bright little girl who was kidnapped while riding her bicycle in Arlington, Texas and brutally murdered. The tragedy shocked and outraged the entire community. Residents contacted radio stations in the Dallas area and suggested they broadcast special "alerts" over the airwaves so that they could help prevent such incidents in the future.

In response to the community's concern for the safety of local children, the Dallas/Fort Worth Association of Radio Managers teamed up with local law-enforcement agencies in northern Texas and developed this innovative early warning system to help find abducted children. Statistics show that, when abducted, a child's greatest enemy is the passage of time.

When is an AMBER Alert issued?

While each state determines its own parameters for issuing an AMBER Alert, the State of New Jersey has developed the following criteria:

AMBER Alerts are intended for non-family cases of child abduction, where the child is in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death. AMBER Alerts are not intended for all missing child incidents, runaways, or child custody situations. All law enforcement must work together to ensure AMBER Alerts are not abused. Abuse will lead to a lack of confidence by law enforcement and the public. For the AMBER Alert to be activated the following criteria must be met:

  • The child must be under the age of 18.
  • The child must be in danger of serious bodily harm or death.
  • There must be enough descriptive information to believe an AMBER Alert will help locate the child.
  • There must have been a short enough delay between the time the child was last seen and the time the child was reported missing to believe an AMBER Alert will help locate the child.

Other Considerations:

  • Possible domestic or parental involvement
  • Is there enough information to indicate that an AMBER Alert will help?
  • TRAK II/AMBER Alert system

    The Montclair Police Department is equipped with a TRAX II computer that is connected to the Garden State Network, which is a private network that connects all New Jersey Law Enforcement Agencies. The TRAX II computer enables the Montclair Police to e-mail or fax missing person flyers, wanted posters, etc to any police agency in New Jersey. All AMBER Alert requests from the Montclair Police are entered into the TRAK II computer and sent to the N.J.S.P. Missing Persons Unit before an AMBER Alert can be issued.

    For more information on the New Jersey AMBER Alert Plan, go to www.njsp.org