The uncertainty of not knowing what happened is one of the most horrifying things a person can endure. You come home to find a spouse or a child missing, realize that a friend never made it home the night before, or a business partner never shows up for work. Many people at this point will call the police, only to find out that they are powerless to even file a report, because the person hasn’t been missing long enough. Then after the required amount of time has passed a report may be made, but you are told that this sort of thing happens all the time, and that they will probably show up in a day or so. With a runaway child, you may find that the situation is treated with even less urgency as there is a feeling that they left on their own and therefore are in less danger.
Sadly the scenario outlined above happens daily in this country, and due to the amount of people that go missing for a short amount of time law enforcement agencies are forced to handle them in this manner due to a lack of manpower and resources. After all, it is true that many people just disappear for a few days and later return. In our cases over the years we have certainly seen this, but sadly we have also recovered the bodies of the missing persons.
If you have a missing persons case and you have reason to believe they did not just leave on their own, or if you have a runaway child, getting someone on the case IMMEDIATELY is of paramount importance. Time is not on your side, and each hour that passes may be what makes the difference in the outcome of your case.