Police: Mass Phone Alert Was to Inform Public About Missing Child
ST. CLOUD - Many people were confused after receiving a call from St. Cloud Police early on Friday morning.
Police say this was due to a mass notification system they used to inform the public about missing 6-year-old Hamza Elmi.
Police say it was done around 1:00 a.m. in the area that it was believed the child may be located. The decision to use the system was due to the missing autistic boy along with the fact that storms were moving into the area. Police notified the public due to the life threatening situation for the child.
Commander Jeff Oxton says the system is not used often and only when it's crucial to public safety. He adds that the unfortunate and sad results of the death of the missing child illustrate why the message was sent out.
"It was our hope that through the public's help we may have been able to locate him and return him safely to his family."