Police explain why Swift 911 users were not notified of two miss - ABC21: Your Weather Authority

Police explain why Swift 911 users were not notified of two missing persons cases

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ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WPTA21) -

This week alone we've told you about two different missing person cases, an endangered teen who went missing and two young runaways.

In neither case was the new Allen County "Swift 911 app" used to spread that information. Wednesday, Police told us most missing person alerts aren't distributed through the swift 9-1-1 app.

Police say you can expect a Swift 911 alert in situations where the missing person is a small child who can't take care of themselves. A small toddler who can't speak, or if there are extreme weather conditions. Police spokesman Michael Joyner says the situation involving 13-year-old Amari Gates and 8-year-old Lamar Gates, missing earlier this week, wasn't dangerous enough to be sent over the Swift 911 app.

"In evaluating this, him being with his 13 year old brother, in our opinion, based on the thousands of investigations we deal with, reduced the acuteness of the at risk situation," Joyner said. "So we didn't deem it necessary to utilize swift 911."

Officer Joyner also says they had more success notifying the media in this case rather than the Swift 911 app. And there's a real concern regarding the app - which was rolled out back in February. 10 months later, only 2,200 people have downloaded it and signed up.

Police say they hope to see that number increase, which can make the tool more valuable and more effective, whether the matter involves the safety of someone else or of you and your family.

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