Arkansas Tech University and Arkansas State Police Troop J hosted a tabletop exercise on Wednesday, Jan. 11, to provide area law enforcement officers with a controlled environment in which to test local resources for solving child abduction cases.
The exercise, which took place at Arkansas Tech’s Chambers Cafeteria West Dining Room, was led by members of the FBI National Child Abduction Rapid Deployment (CARD) team.
Representatives from a variety of law enforcement agencies went step-by-step through the process of a child abduction case beginning with the moment that a 911 emergency call is received.
“We are pleased to have opportunities such as this one to coordinate with our fellow law enforcement agencies for the greater good of the communities we serve,” said Joshua McMillian, chief of public safety at Arkansas Tech. “Bringing in nationally-recognized experts such as the ones we learned from today allows for best practices to be shared throughout the local law enforcement community. It is the type of training you hope to never utilize, but preparing for such scenarios saves lives.”
Agencies represented at the training included Arkansas Community Correction, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, Arkansas State Police Troop J, Arkansas Tech University Department of Public Safety, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Pope County Office of Emergency Management, Pope County Sheriff’s Department and Russellville Police Department.
The FBI Violent Crimes Against Children program established CARD teams in 2005 as a means of offering quick and effective response in the event of a child abduction. There are five regional units and a total of 60 agents nationwide who serve on FBI CARD teams.