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Name: Missing Persons Reporting Policy - Interim
Responsible Office: Office of Public Safety

Applies to: (examples; Faculty,Staff, Students, etc)

Students

Policy Overview:

Issued: 05-20-2019
Next Review Date: 06-10-2020
Frequency of Reviews: Annually

Consistent with the Clery Act, The St. Louis College of Pharmacy Office of Public Safety has established the following missing person’s policy.  Any individual who believes a currently enrolled STLCOP student is missing shall notify the Office of Public Safety. Following notification, public safety will commence an investigation along with the Office of Student Affairs as soon as reasonably possible. Should the investigation result in the conclusion that the student is missing, the Office of Public Safety will notify the Saint Louis Metropolitan Police and/or the appropriate local law enforcement agency immediately, as well as the student’s missing person contact within a span of time not to exceed 24 hours from the time the student was determined to be missing.  If the missing student is under the age of 18, and not an emancipated individual, public safety or student affairs will notify the student’s parent or legal guardian immediately after the College determines that the student is missing, in addition to notifying the contact person designated by the student.

This policy applies to students who reside in on-campus housing and who is determined to have been missing for 24 hours. 


Table of Contents:

  1. Purpose
  2. Procedures
  3. Campus Security Authorities (CSA)
  4. Office of Public Safety Responsibilities
  5. Confidential Resources
  6. Annual Security Report (ASR) and Annual Fire and Security Report (AFSR)

Definitions:

Term

Definition

 

 

Annual Security Report (ASR)

The Clery Act requires those postsecondary institutions participating in the Higher Education Act’s Title IV student financial assistance programs and each of their separate campuses to annually publish by October 1 a report containing the campus safety policy statements1 and Clery Crime statistics for the three most recent calendar years. This annual report is known as the Annual Security Report (ASR)

Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act)

Also known as the Clery Act, this federal law requires colleges and universities that receive Title IV funding to disclose information about Clery Crimes occurring on Clery Geography and safety related policies.

Missing Person

Any person whose whereabouts are unknown to the reporting party including but not limited to anyone taken, detained, concealed or enticed away. Missing person also includes anyone who is missing voluntarily, involuntarily or under circumstances not conforming to their ordinary habits or behavior and who may be in need of assistance.

Missing Student

(On-Campus)

A notification issued to an emergency contact, and/or a parent/legal guardian and the local law enforcement agency by a designated STLCOP official when a student who lives in on-campus housing has been missing for 24 hours.

Missing Student Report

Online Advocate report that is located on the external webpage of the College at stlcop.edu.  This report can be completed by anyone of the campus community to file a report of a student who they believe to be missing.  Public safety also can complete an incident report after they have been dispatched to investigate a report of a resident student missing.

Missing Student Emergency Contact

Residence life will have the on campus resident student complete a separate form to identify that student’s emergency contact for the sole purpose of a missing student report for their records.

Details:

I. Purpose
  1. This policy describes the procedures of the Offices of Public Safety and Student Affairs for accepting, documenting and investigating missing persons in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act or Clery Act.

Procedures:

II. Procedures

  1. It is the policy of public safety to thoroughly investigate all reports of a missing person. Additionally, every person reported missing will be considered at risk until information to the contrary is confirmed.
  2. Cooperation between offices of the College is required when a person is reported missing. If a missing person either resides in, or was last seen outside the jurisdiction of public safety, public safety will immediately contact the law enforcement agency responsible for that jurisdiction. If that entity chooses not to take the missing person report responsibility will be assumed by the Offices of Public Safety and Student Affairs within the scope of abilities.
  3. It is the policy of public safety to take all missing persons reports even if legal custody of the missing individual has not been established.

III. Office of Public Safety and Student Affairs Responsibilities

  1. If it is determined that unusual circumstances are involved in the report of a missing person, the person will be considered at risk and an expanded investigation, including the use of all appropriate resources, will immediately commence.
  2. There is no required waiting period for reporting a missing person. A person may be declared “Missing” when their whereabouts are unknown and unexplainable for a period of time that is regarded by knowledgeable persons as highly unusual or suspicious in consideration of the subject’s behavior patterns, plans or routines.
  3. Communications personnel receiving the report of a missing person shall; (Public safety is a non-sworn agency and does not have access to criminal justice information systems that allows communication officers to enter missing person information).
    1. Dispatch an officer in a prompt manner to the scene of the report.
    2. Notify the on duty supervisor when appropriate.
    3. Notify the appropriate student affairs personnel.
  4. The responding officer, in coordination with residence life personnel, assigned to the report of a missing person shall;
    1. Respond promptly to the scene of the report
    2. Interview the person(s) who made the initial report
    3. Obtain a description of the missing person. Collect information about the missing person including, race, height, weight, hair and eye color, clothing and other noteworthy features and relay to other officers who may be assisting with the investigation. Recent photographs and videos should be secured if available.
    4. An audit of the missing persons card access will be conducted. This may be obtained by the director of public safety, parking administrator or IT.
    5. Verify that the person is in fact missing; officers should never assume searches completed by lay persons have been performed in a thorough manner, another check of the residence and grounds shall be made including places where someone may be trapped, asleep or hiding. A search of the residence should be completed even if the missing person was last seen elsewhere.
    6. Identify the circumstances of the disappearance; officers need to ascertain whether the circumstances surrounding a person’s disappearance are as such that a heightened level of response is warranted. If unusual circumstances exist as defined by this policy then the option to employ additional response methods should be taken. In situations where the circumstances are not clear, officers should act in the best interest of the safety of the missing person.
    7. Determine when, where and by whom the missing person was last seen
    8. Interview the person who had last contact with the missing person. Be alert to contradictions, evasiveness by the witness especially if their statements cannot be readily substantiated.
    9. Identify the missing person’s zone of safety for their age and physical/mental state.
    10. Make an initial determination of the type of incident, officers must be cautious when labeling or classifying a missing person report since the classification process shall affect the way in which initial information or evidence is gathered. Even if the first indications suggest a less urgent incident, officers should consider all possibilities until the reports category is clearly determined.
    11. Obtain a description of the suspected abductor and or other pertinent information.
    12. Provide detailed descriptive information to communications for broadcast updates.
    13. Identify and interview everyone at the scene
    14. Conduct a thorough search of the scene with the assistance of additional personnel.
    15. Secure and safeguard the area as a potential crime scene, if unusual circumstances exist, officers must take control of the immediate area where the incident occurred and establish an appropriate perimeter to avoid destruction of potential evidence.
  5. The supervisor assigned to the report of a missing person shall
    1. Obtain a briefing from the assigned officer and other personnel at the scene
    2. Determine if additional personnel and resources are needed to assist in the investigation
    3. Make immediate notifications to director of public safety, vice president of operations, and vice president of student affairs.
    4. Make notification to the missing person’s emergency contact.
    5. Notify the Office of Marketing and Communications.
  6. The investigators assigned to the report of a missing person shall
    1. Obtain a briefing from College personnel
    2. Verify the accuracy of all descriptive information
    3. Coordinate with the SLMPD to ensure a thorough canvassing of the surrounding area is occurring.
    4. Audit class records for attendance
    5. Obtain a brief history of current family/relationship/domestic dynamics.
    6. Explore any conflicting information
    7. Evaluate the need for additional resources
    8. Update descriptive information
    9. Monitor media relations and social media.
  7. An officer assigned to the return of a missing person will,
    1. Verify the located person is in fact the reported missing person.
    2. Inform the person that they are the subject of a missing person investigation, if the missing person is a competent adult the officer will determine the person’s willingness for public safety/law enforcement to reveal their whereabouts, to the extent possible a person’s desire to remain hidden shall be honored.
    3. Inform all parties/resources in the investigation of the findings immediately.
    4. Notify the reporting person(s) of the well-being of and if permissible the whereabouts and contact information of the person who has been located.
    5. Complete appropriate supplemental reports and cancel all outstanding notifications a supplemental report should be made that describes the persons activities while missing and circumstances of the recovery/return.
  8. As an unsworn agency public safety does not have access to or the ability to input information into a public electronic alert systems and will rely on sworn agencies for the dissemination of this information. If the case is involving juveniles that are guests on campus, STLCOP may choose to implement Alertus or Rave to assist in the investigation.

IV. Confidential Resources

All confidential offices on campus are exempt from CSA reporting requirements and include but are not limited to the Office of Student Affairs. Disclosures made to Professional Counselors, licensed psychologists, and Pastoral Counselors, are privileged and confidential and are exempt from the CSA reporting requirements.

V. Annual Security Report (ASR) and Annual Fire Safety Report (AFSR)

By October 1 of each year, campuses will publish and disseminate the ASR and the AFSR that are compliant with the Clery Act. The College will submit the web based crime statistics to the U.S. Department of Education by a date set annually by the Department of Education (typically mid-October). Campuses are required to distribute the ASR and AFSR to current employees, enrolled students, prospective employees, and prospective students with a notice that includes a statement of the reports’ availability, the exact electronic address at which the report is posted, a brief description of the reports’ contents, and a statement that the campus will provide a paper copy of the report upon request.

 

Responsibilities:

Position/Office/Department

Responsibility

Public Safety

Reporting and Investigation

Public Safety Director

Clery Act compliance

General Counsel

Policy Review and Guidance

Student Affairs

Reporting and Investigation

Policy Contacts:

Name

Contact Information

Scott Patterson

314.446.8382

Supplemental Information:

None

Original PDF:

Missing Persons Reporting Policy - Interim original PDF