Purpose of the Child ID File
Imagine that one second your child is by your side, and the next second he or she is gone. It's a parent's worst nightmare. Having the needed information readily available the first few moments of the search can be invaluable to law enforcement authorities. Realizing this, Sheriff Greg Champagne is making available free Child ID Files for your children.
Chances are you'll never need to use the file, but why take the risk? Many children disappear each year, whether they are runaways or kidnapped victims. No matter why a child is missing, finding that child quickly is vital and a Child ID File can help.
The St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office offers free child fingerprinting and a booklet about keeping a Child ID File.
Where to Start
A Child ID File is a packet of information about a child, gathered, stored and regularly updated by a parent. The file focuses on a child's unique characteristics. Begin the file with a personal history section that includes their name, nicknames, date and place of birth, home address, and telephone number. It is also a good idea to include a copy of the child's birth certificate.
What to Include
A recent photograph is extremely useful in searching for a missing child. Include a close-up shot of your child's face. Update the photo twice a year (four times a year for children under the age of two). Keep a description of the child's height, weight, color of hair, eyes, and complexion. Include a description of any scars, birthmarks, or other distinguishing characteristics. Also include blood type, allergies, and x-rays if available. Know how to obtain dental records if necessary. Update information once a year or as soon as it becomes outdated. Record the date on which you enter new information in the file.
Have your child's fingerprints taken. Fingerprints can be used to identify children who can't identify themselves due to injuries, disabilities, trauma, or because they're too young to speak. They can also be used for older kids who refuse to identify themselves or who give incorrect information or for victims who have died. Children's appearances change, making photos less useful as time passes, but fingerprints stay the same.
For more information, please contact Susie Breaux Gauthier at the Special Services Department at (985) 783-1355.