The state’s top law enforcement official says the recovery of three kids in southeastern Wisconsin Monday afternoon shows exactly how the Amber Alert system can help protect missing children.
Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says the alert was issued when Lavatta Smith and her children were found missing after a fire at their Milwaukee home. The Amber Alert message was widely broadcast on TV and radio.
Van Hollen says a driver in Kenosha County listening to a Milwaukee Brewers’ game spotted the purple Ford Taurus described in the alert, and then contacted police. Authorities then were able to track down and arrest Smith.
There were actually five kids in the vehicle, including the three missing children. All of them were safe.
Van Hollen says the case is another example of the successful program at work. Since 2003, Wisconsin has issued 19 Amber Alerts and recovered 26 abducted children.
In addition to being broadcast, Amber Alerts are displayed on highway message boards. You can also sign up for text message alerts on the state’s Amber Alert website.