Police have tips on how to keep older children safe - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Police have tips on how to keep older children safe

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)- The rescue of three Cleveland women Tuesday is a reminder to parents that young children aren't the only targets for being abducted.

"In general, teenagers are probably more apt to be thetarget for an abduction because they're the ones that if it's a small child you'regoing to be watching them more closely," said Lynn Waterworth, a captain of the Criminal Investigations Division with the Jonesboro Police Department.

 Waterworth said although Jonesboro hasnever had a problem with children being abducted it's important for parents totalk to their kids.

"Teenagers you know you give them a little more freedom andthey think they can handle things and they tend to put themselves in situationswhere they are properly more apt to be abducted," she said.

Parents should talk to their kids about recognizingdangerous situations and avoiding people who make them feel uncomfortable.

"And say this is whatyou need to be on the watch out for and these are the things you should do to avoidputting yourself in those situations where something like this could happen toyou," Waterworth said.

According to the National Center for Missing and ExploitedChildren, there are 16 missing persons in Arkansas alone.

Fourteen year old Walnut Ridge teen Sidney Randall wentmissing in March. Police are still searching for clues to lead them to herlocation.

Waterworth said kids should try to get other people's attention if they feel they are in danger.

"Obviously the firstthing, make noise, make sure somebody else is paying attention and will seewhat is going on," she said.

But it doesn't stop there, also try to leave the situation.

"If they feeluncomfortable about a situation or if they feel they might be in danger in anyway, shape or form go somewhere public, go to a store or to other people andmake it known that you feel like you need help or you feel like you might be indanger," Wateworth said.

Waterworth said the biggest takeaway for parents is tocommunicate and pay more attention to their children.

"Where your child isgoing and who they are with and know that you will have somebody to contact, noonly them but other people they are with," she said. 

And for teens, it's important that they are honest  with their parents aboutwhere they are going.

"Kids are so worried about well I wanna go over here becauseI want to do this and I want to go over there so I can do that and they thinkwell if I tell my parents this is where I am going then they won't let me go," she said.

It's also important for teens to take a friend when goingplaces and to always try to stay in a group.

Copyright 2013 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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