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Arizona the latest state to enact ‘Silver Alert’

PHOENIX — Gov. Jan Brewer signed it into law and now Arizona has become the latest state to implement a Silver Alert.

The purpose of the Silver Alert program is to establish a system, similar to the Amber Alert, to track down an elderly person, following a suspicious or unexplained disappearance. The Silver Alert will be coordinated by the Department of Public Safety and will assist the investigating law enforcement agency.

“It increases the level of resources,” said DPS officer Carrick Cook. “We will go as far as we need to go, because we know someone is in danger,”

The criteria for DPS to issue a Silver Alert is as follows:

• The missing person must be 65 years of age or older;

• A police report must be filed;

• The law enforcement agency believes the person is in peril because of disability, need of life-saving medications, weather conditions;

• All local resources to locate the missing person have been exhausted.

If a situation merits a Silver Alert, DPS will be notified. The department will then issue an Attempt To Locate alert to police agencies and issue alerts to local media. In addition, ADOT will post missing person information on digital freeway signs.