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US Marshals find 200 'critically missing' children during 6-week operation

Among the 200 children, 123 were found in dangerous situations.
Posted at 11:21 AM, Jul 02, 2024

The U.S. Marshals Service said it found 200 critically missing children during a six-week "Operation We Will Find You 2" campaign between May 20 and June 24. This was the second time the U.S. Marshals conducted such an operation in conjunction with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Among the 200 children, 123 were found in dangerous situations. The other 77 were located in what the Marshals called "safe locations."

Out of the 200 children found, 173 were endangered runaways, and 25 were otherwise missing. There was also one child found who was abducted by a family member, and another child found following a non-family abduction.

The youngest child found was 5 months old, the U.S. Marshals said.

The U.S. Marshals noted that numerous children were subject to sex trafficking, sexual exploitation and sexual abuse.

U.S. Marshals Service Director Ronald L. Davis said that finding missing children remains one of the service's "top priorities."

"One of the most sacred missions of U.S. Marshals Service is locating and recovering our nation’s critically missing children,” he said.

The operation focused on several geographic areas with high clusters of missing children. The mission included major cities Phoenix; Miami; Portland, Oregon; Sacramento, California; and New York City.

“Operation We Will Find You is a shining example of the results we can achieve when we unite in our mission to find missing children,” said Michelle DeLaune, CEO of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. “We are grateful that vulnerable children have been recovered as part of this operation, and we commend the U.S. Marshals Service and all the agencies involved for their commitment to protect youth and ensure these children are not forgotten. Behind every statistic, there is a child who deserves to grow up safe from harm.”