How to help (and not hinder) the search for Kamille McKinney

Updated: Oct. 15, 2019 at 5:55 AM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The reported abduction of 3-year-old Kamille McKinney gripped the community sending shock waves across state lines. The community immediately stepped up to help find Kamille, known affectionately by family as “Cupcake."

According to Birmingham police, Kamille was kidnapped from a birthday party at Tom Brown Village in Birmingham on Saturday night.

Neighbor’s took to social media posting leads and trying to figure out how they could help find Kamille safely.

WJXT crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson, an award-winning retired police officer, weighed in on how the public can help in the search.

“Do not approach the child unless the child is alone and seems to be stranded. If the child is with an adult you don’t want to approach because you don’t know the mindset of the person with the child. It could be the wrong child, they [you] could be asking for trouble," said Jefferson.

Jefferson, a 24-year veteran of the Jacksonville Police Department, has experience investigating cases similar to Kamille’s. He said the community and family can help in the search by posting Kamille’s pictures in neighborhood’s and using social media to expand the search.

According to Jefferson, law enforcement manpower is limited, so the public’s help is needed when trying to solve cases.

“Every single officer that’s on a search for this child wants to find that child. Not to be a hero or anything like that. They are putting themselves in the predicament that the parent’s are in right now,” explained Jefferson.

As of Monday night, there was still no sign Kamille.

Birmingham Police have offered an additional hotline number for people who see Kamille or have other information about the case. That number is (205) 297-8413. In addition, anyone one with any information may also call CrimeStoppers at 205-254-7777 or 911.

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