Promising Practices in Missing and Unidentified Person Case Investigations

Promising Practices in Missing and Unidentified Person Case Investigations
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1 Module 1
Recorded on: 2020-09-16
Unit 1 Slide Deck: Promising Practices in Missing and Unidentified Person Case Investigations
Unit 2 Recording: Promising Practices in Missing and Unidentified Person Case Investigations

This presentation will discuss promising practices that are increasing missing and unidentified person case reporting and resolutions, to include a discussion of:

  • Federal databases utilized for missing and unidentified person case investigations
  • Statistics to provide a better understanding of the missing and unidentified person problem in the United States
  • Free forensic resources provided by NamUs, to include a discussion of enhancements in fingerprint search capabilities, sufficient DNA sampling for effective CODIS searching, and collaborations that have increased the ability to acquire biometric information for missing persons
  • Increased use of NamUs by tribal law enforcement and tribal communities
  • State legislation that has enhanced resources and law enforcement’s response to missing person reports across the country
  • New NamUs technology development projects, to include technology to support victim reporting, accounting, and identification during critical incidents
  • Victim services available through NamUs to better support families impacted by the death or disappearance of a loved one


This is the first of a two-part series. Click here for Part 2, NamUs Victim Services for Families with a Missing Loved One, on Nov 17.


Audience Comments

  • “The sheer number of programs that are out there. Definitely discovered some new resources. I am incredibly excited about their next victim services related webinar!” — Aaron
  • “The info on missing indigenous people was fascinating! She just needed more time.” 🙂 — Angela
  • “Learned about the different agencies and databases that DNA, fingerprints and dental records can be submitted to, to try to match with unidentified cases. I was not aware about the different age groups and how that affects being reported missing. I was not aware of AI/AN as a separate group nationally. Since I work for a Medical Examiner Office, I would like to learn more about the Unclaimed cases section in NamUs.” — Alice
  • “It was very interesting to learn about a website that is open to anyone (especially family members) to help/assist in locating their loved ones. Great idea. Thanks!” — BARBARA
  • “It was absolutely one of the best presentations….so ALL OF IT. Very informative. As a victim advocate, I had no idea how much NAMUS has to help investigations and victims. I have experienced missing person cases in my professional life, as well personally, as a friend whose daughter is still missing. The different resources, the ease of accessing information, being able to subscribe (which I will do) as I am interested in the next presentation on victim services.” — Barbara E.
  • “As an author, I found this webinar to be a great overview of new developments in this area. It could easily have been a 90-minute webinar! Now I know where to go if I need more information. BJ Spamer was extremely knowledgeable and presented the information in a way that was easy to follow, even for non-professionals.” — Cynthia
  • “Good information on NamUs. I did not know anything or what it did for LE. Thank you, it will be a useful tool for the Department.” — Rodney



Additional Resources
10 months ago
NCMEC Forensic Imaging Techniques and Services
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children has been creating age progressions for long […]
1 year ago
Using NamUs to Resolve Missing and Unidentified Indigenous Person Cases
NamUs is a powerful tool designed to assist with missing and unidentified persons cases. Traditional […]
2 years ago
Federal Legislation Impacting Children Missing from Care and NCMEC Resources
Resources from the Presentation: Law Enforcement Investigative Checklist NCMEC FAON Flyer […]
4 years ago
Law Enforcement Response to Missing and Unidentified Persons
At any given time, there are over 100,000 missing and unidentified persons in the United States. Jus […]