KMVT speaks to law enforcement officials about runaway children investigation

The Twin Falls County Sheriff’s office says the children are considered runaways, a distinct difference from missing
Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 4:53 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — KMVT has received a number of phone calls and messages regarding a group of missing children, so we spoke to authorities about the cases.

The Twin Falls County Sheriff’s office says the children are considered runaways, a distinct difference from missing. This means the person is believed to have left the home of their own volition.

According to Lori Stewart of the Twin Falls County Sheriff’s Office, that doesn’t mean the Sherrif’s office takes the case any less seriously.

“It’s hard because these are emotional subjects,” said Stewart. “Emotionally, for these families. I don’t know that there really is a difference. If their child is not in front of them, that’s terrifying. We have no reason to believe that the runaways that we are investigating right now are in danger, that there’s sex trafficking or drug trafficking.”

Stewart also says she and her team do all that they can, within the law, to locate these minors. She says they too can get frustrated at how long that process can take.

“I think that it’s hard for the public to understand what takes so long to find these kiddos, you know, what we’re really doing,” Stewart said. “But we’re actively searching, and actively talking to people within our limits, within the laws that guide us.”

According to Stewart, there are currently four active runaway cases within Twin Falls County limits.

The Sheriff’s Office urges anyone who has any information about these children, their whereabouts, or who they may be with, to contact them as soon as possible as leads often lose significance quickly in cases like these.

KMVT spoke with Stewart on Thursday. Social media posts circling the community claimed the runaway children were connected and being groomed to leave their homes by a criminal.

Stewart says this is not true and each runaway case was distinct. We also reached out to Twin Falls Police. While these teens are no longer runaways, they do have 3 missing juvenile cases that are ongoing.

There were none recently reported.

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