Hertfordshire Constabulary has launched a new team which will enhance the force’s response to missing people so frontline officers have more time to spend on physically searching for people.
The main objective of this introduction is to ensure that missing people are found as quickly as possible and returned safely to their families.
The Locate Team, which comprises nine assistant investigators and a team manager, serves the whole of the county and works with operational police officers to assist with missing person investigations.
The team aims to reduce pressure on frontline officers by taking on desk-based investigations such as liaising with families of the missing person, speaking to witnesses, screening CCTV, obtaining mobile phone data and coordinating with relevant partner agencies.
Previously frontline officers had responsibility to complete all missing person enquires. The introduction of the new team will mean that these officers will now be able to spend more time physically going out to search for missing people, as well as respond to other emergency incidents.
Locate Team manager Fraser Wylie said: “It’s great to be a part of this new team. We are looking forward to getting involved in investigations and ultimately doing everything we can to make sure that missing people are found as quickly as possible and returned safely to their families.
“As we are taking on such a large part of the work which was undertaken by frontline officers, I am confident we will be able to achieve this.”
It can be a distressing experience when someone goes missing, however it is important to take immediate action, especially if that person could be in danger. If someone is missing and you are concerned, report them as missing via 101.
If a child, vulnerable person or someone who may be at risk of coming to harm goes missing, you should call 999. You do not have to wait 24 hours before reporting a person as missing.