An AMBER Alert is only issued in cases of a confirmed child abduction when the general public’s help may make a life or death difference in the safe recovery of the abducted child. Ohio has a statewide AMBER Alert plan, as well as numerous regional and local plans.
This alert is activated through the Emergency Alert System (EAS), using the Child Abduction Emergency (CAE) code. Alerts may be issued within one or more EAS operational areas, or statewide. EAS is only used for the initial activation. All updates and cancellations are communicated via secondary notification. EAS activation of an AMBER Alert will also trigger distribution of a Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) to all WEA-enabled mobile devices.
Secondary notification of AMBER Alerts is provided via social media, email, text message or fax. Information about active alerts, including photos, is available online or by calling 1.877.AMBER.OH.
The OAB recommends participating stations broadcast the AMBER Alert received via EAS immediately and rebroadcast the information every 15 minutes for the first two hours of an active alert.
The OAB has developed a poster with information about each alert for stations to use for quick reference. Contact the OAB’s Christine Merritt at 614.228.4052 for a print version of the poster.
Criteria (Established in Ohio Revised Code)
- Law enforcement confirms the child is under 18 years of age;
- Law enforcement believes the abduction poses a credible threat of immediate danger of seriously bodily harm or death to the child;
- There is sufficient descriptive information about the child, the suspect and/or the circumstances surrounding the abduction to believe the activation of the alert will help locate the child; and,
- A law enforcement agency determines that the child is not a runaway and has not been abducted as a result of a family abduction, unless the investigation determines the child is in immediate danger of serious bodily harm or death.