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March 15th, 2010

More About NamUs.gov

smolinski
NamUs.gov is The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System. I’m pleased at how quickly word has gotten around about this database. I’ve even seen it be used as a plot point in a tv show (I forget which!).

So to help spread the word I wanted to link to a recent AP story about NamUs.gov by Steve Karnowski. It was picked up a lot of places, here is one version at the Guardian.

The story, which is titled, Database Can Crack Missing Person Cases—if Used, begins:

A new online database promises to crack some of the nation’s 100,000 missing persons cases and provide answers to desperate families, but only a fraction of law enforcement agencies are using it.

The clearinghouse, dubbed NamUs (Name Us), offers a quick way to check whether a missing loved one might be among the 40,000 sets of unidentified remains that languish at any given time with medical examiners across the country. NamUs is free, yet many law enforcement agencies still aren’t aware of it, and others aren’t convinced they should use their limited staff resources to participate.

The picture is from the story. “In a photo made March 17, 2007, Janice Smolinski poses in her Cheshire, Conn., home where a photo of her son, Billy, is visible in the foreground. Billy disappeared from his Waterbury, Conn. home in Aug. 2004 and Smolinski believes a Justice Department database program will someday help find her son who was 31 when he vanished. (AP Photo/Michelle McLoughlin, File)”

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  • 1 Eloisa Chavez // Mar 15, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    Yay! I am so glad this is finally getting so much attention. Law Enforcement needs training in this field. My son is missing since 08-01-2009 and nothing is being done. I had to educate the detectives on NamUs, they had never heard of it. I started the page on NamUs for my son and finally its is done. But will the next person that goes missing in this town–will their family know to get their loved one’s info to NamUs??? It’s up to Law Enforcement to follow through with informing the family that they have the option to go to the database and help the family get their loved one on the database.

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