VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) – Virginia Beach Police are defending their use of a reverse 911 system to awaken residents in the middle of the night as they searched for a 12-year-old runaway.
The Virginian-Pilot reports (http://bit.ly/1bm4r0m ) that some residents complained after receiving the automated alert about the missing girl around 3 a.m. Tuesday. Capt. Sean Adams says more than 17,000 homes were contacted, but only about half picked up in person or through an answering machine.
Adams says police had searched unsuccessfully for the girl for about three hours when they decided to activate the reverse 911 system. He apologized for inconveniencing some residents but said police were obligated to do everything they could to get the girl home safely. Friends eventually found the girl, and she was reunited with her parents Tuesday night.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)