CLEVELAND - Cuyahoga County has a new resource to help families who have missing loved ones.
The Cuyahoga County Missing Persons Initiative recently launched a new website aimed at giving county residents a one stop location to research and report missing persons.
According to the county, more than 1,000 people are reported missing the state of Ohio (about 700 of them are children) and until now, there has been no collective database available to the public that shows all of those who are missing from Cuyahoga County.
"Since I took office we have worked to develop an effective, data driven program that includes the human touch and careful collaboration. The Missing Person Initiative is now fully launched. We are going to continue our efforts to bring our missing people home," said County Executive Ed FitzGerald in a press release.
The new website will provide up-to-date assistance for residents and law enforcement. The website will coordinate information and assist collaboration with the media as well as post missing person's case information, picture, and lead investigator contact information.
Residents will be able to locate updated relevant missing person information including individuals currently reported as missing, sign up for a monthly newsletter, and contact to different local, state, and federal resources.
The website is just one part of Missing Persons Initiative. The county has also hired Tanisha L. Knighton to the county sheriff's department to serve as a Missing Person Liaison and the sheriff's department's Impact Unit has also been expanded. Knighton's primary role is to assist municipalities by maintaining and updating the website and database. She will also serve as a single point of contact for families, community partners, and relevant outreach groups.
The Cuyahoga County Missing Persons Initiative website can be found here: http://www.missingpersonscuyahoga.org/
National Night Out will take on a very personal meaning for a local family as they use the event as a platform to spread the word about their missing loved one.