UPDATE: The Helena Police Department said on Wednesday that Nacheyla has been found and is safe; no other details have been released.
The Montana Department of Justice has issued a Missing/Endangered Person Advisory for 15-year old Nacheyla Dempsey.
The MEPA was issued on Tuesday afternoon, and says that Nacheyla has been missing since September 2016.
On Tuesday, February 28, at 11 a.m., officials with the Confederal Salish & Kootenai Tribal Social Services agency received a phone call from Nacheyla's non-custodial parent, Rena.
Rena said that Nacheyla was in an undisclosed location in Helena, was out of control, and was using heroin.
An altercation was heard over the phone, and contact was lost.
Authorities believe that Nacheyla is in danger.
Anyone with information about Nacheyla is asked to call Flathead Tribal Police at 406-675-4700, or call 911.
The Montana Department of Justice provides the following information about the differences between AMBER Alerts and Missing/Endangered Person Advisories:
Montana AMBER Alert Criteria
To activate the program, all of the following criteria must be met:
There is reasonable belief by law enforcement that a child has been abducted or has disappeared under suspicious circumstances.
The missing child is age 17 years or younger, or has a proven mental or physical disability.
The law enforcement agency believes the child is in imminent danger of serious bodily injury or death.
There is enough descriptive information about the victim and abduction for law enforcement to issue an AMBER Alert to assist in the recovery of the child.
The child's name and other critical data elements, including the Child Abduction flag, have been entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) computer.
The AMBER Alert system is not used to track runaways, missing children, or children involved in custody disputes. The program is restricted to child abduction cases that could be life threatening.
MEPA – Missing and Endangered Person Advisory
A MEPA is a modified alert program designed to provide Montana law enforcement agencies another option to respond to the types of missing person cases they typically deal with. This may include tracking runaways, missing children, children involved in custody disputes and missing adults. MEPA can be used in situations that do not meet AMBER Alert criteria, but do meet the MEPA criteria outlined below.
MEPA Criteria: A MEPA Advisory is initiated solely by Montana law enforcement agencies using the following criteria:
Do the circumstances fail to meet the criteria for an AMBER Alert? (If they do meet the criteria, immediately follow the AMBER Alert protocol.)
Is the person missing under unexplained, involuntary or suspicious circumstances?
Is the person believed to be in danger because of age, health, mental or physical disability, or environmental or weather conditions; to be in the company of a potentially dangerous person; or is there some other factor that may put the person in peril?
Is there information that could assist the public in the safe recovery of the missing person? The initial advisory will include any available information, like name, age, physical description, date of birth and where the person was last seen. It might also include information about whether the person has a health condition or physical or mental disability.