More than 150 missing, runaway children found in North Carolina operation

North Carolina

A close-up photo of police lights by night

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WNCN) — Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say more than 150 missing and runaway juveniles in the area have been located, according to a news release from the department.

Officials say the collaborative effort was another attempt to locate the missing juveniles after previous efforts to locate them had been unsuccessful.

Prior to the start of the operation, officials say detectives and U.S. Marshals recovered more than 130 missing and runaway juveniles. Following that effort, Operation Carolina Homecoming was launched.

Between April 26 and May 7, two-person teams consisting of CMPD’s Missing Person Unit detectives, United States Marshal Service deputies and the Department of Public Safety Missing Persons Unit conducted extensive searches and located 27 more missing juveniles, according to a release.

According to police, several of the juveniles were discovered to have been engaged in high-risk activities such as prostitution and narcotics activity, and a few of them were victims of human trafficking. 

To provide them with resources for recovery, police say they leveraged partnerships with Atrium Health Levine Children’s, Pat’s Place Child Advocacy Center, the North Carolina ISAAC Fusion Center and Mecklenburg County Child Protective Services.

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