Police search helicopters circled Montclair Saturday night around 11 pm, searching for a missing 8-year-old child. The child was apparently found shortly after 11 with a relative. Baristanet received five tips from readers concerned about the helicopter presence. Montclair police dispatch would not release any details except for the fact that a child was found and helicopters were involved.

22 replies on “Choppers Search for Missing Child, Who is Safe”

  1. I live on Elm right across from the intersection of Lexington Ave. At around 10:30 last night I received one of the automated recordings from the Montclair Police Dept about a missing child who apparently had been last seen on Lexington. Soon after the helicopters started (bringing back lots of memories to this former Los Angelino) and I could see a barrage of emergency vehicle lights across the street on Lexington. I’m very glad to hear the child is OK but it’s a little shocking that all that had to happen while she was safe with a relative. What ever happened to picking up the phone to inform your family member of their child’s whereabouts?

  2. fussy… i completely agree with you. more importantly, why was an 8 year old child’s whereabouts unsure at 11 p.m.????
    would you be so kind as to post how to receive the automated recordings? i’m brand new to this area! thank you!

  3. I don’t really know how to start getting the alert calls — they just started one day! I’m sure you could call the police department and request to be on their list. Be forewarned that these calls can come at any hour — I had one at 6 am one day.

  4. personally, i’d rather have this happen – there was a near child abduction in the area recently (i’m not going to say the town because thats pointless) and everyone should have gotten called immediately with the make and color of car/description of driver…i say good for Montclair for being proactive-

  5. Fussyhostess: Many children are abducted by their own relatives. Lots of times, it centers around custody battles. So yeah, I’m glad the child was found safe and sound but just because it’s a “relative,” we can’t always assume it’s not a kidnapping.

  6. “Proactive” is an absolutely meaningless word, beloved of motivational speakers but otherwise inane.
    This is a really strange item, however. No details are offered save that “a child was found and helicopters were involved.” Which seems to me to call for some hesitation in posting the item, if only to provide more detail. And to indicate the curious desperation of a reallllyy slow news day. (Which is as it should be over Labor Day weekend, no?)

  7. ok ok. so i take back the word proactive. i have recently been seduced by it- and have been enjoying using it- but you are right. it’s an inane word. and your points are actually good ones.
    that said, i still stand by my opinion.

  8. I don’t think posting this story has as much to do with a slow news day as it does with people wondering why helicopters are flying overhead. We heard them last night and recalled a year or so ago when there was that brawl down by Elmwood and Maple. It’s rare to hear helicopters in Montclair and it’s never something good. My wife asked me this morning if I had checked Baristanet to see what had happened.
    If there’s a missing child or possible abduction (or a brawl), lots of people want to know. Cathar, don’t bash Baristanet for being a source of information people want.

  9. We heard (and saw–v. cool!) the copters over our house last night around 11 for about 20 minutes. My 13-year-old asked me if I had checked Baristanet to see what was happening. I said no, but I’d check in the morning–and sure enough, here it is. Good local news source. Glad there’s a happy ending.

  10. We were wondering. We assumed news copters but nothing on the 11pm news. Thanks for explanation.

  11. When I heard the choppers, I put on my scan thingie and the comments were of the choppers going from Glenfield Park to Watsessing Park. After a while, someone said that the child had been found — with an uncle. and then the choppers left and the scanning stopped.
    With Baristanet, I now know more than what was in the Ledger — which was nothing. Maybe it was because of the time and printing deadlines? I’ll look tomorrow, but maybe the thing to do is count on Baristanet for anything local!!

  12. wcs2, I was not bashihg the Baristas for “being a source of information people want.” But rather questioning the tendency here to post items that offer no information under the guise of, well, people want to know, and admittedly we don’t know much yet, but we’ve got to come up with “x” number of items daily, so….
    Which is a very different matter. And do you even personally care so much about this item since it appears not even to have been updated? So really, you’re telling me that it’s non-information you “want,” it’s just that you want it now.
    (I’m assuming, too, that you realized even if you heard the choppers, wcs2, that it wasn’t a Russian aircav unit launching a stealth strike on the Georgians who’ve settled in the Passaic_Clifton area.)

  13. cathar,
    I pieced the story together from a number of tips, including several from a reliable tipster we often hear from in police situations.
    When I called the police that night (it was Saturday), they initially said to call back Tuesday when the chief was back. When I said that wouldn’t do, the dispatcher put me on hold and then came back and just gave the information I reported.
    I know the item was sketchy, but I also knew that my tipster had gotten it right. Moreover, I knew many people were worried about the helicopters, and would want to know that there wasn’t something else to worry about, like a dangerous prison escapee on the run…

  14. Debbie hit the nail on the head. My husband and I heard the copters and saw the search lights (definitely not the local news) and immediately knew it wasn’t something routine and potentially could have been a search for someone not so upstanding running around the neighborhood. What was in the story was all I needed to know. Thanks.

  15. Am I the only one who received the automated alert call? Sounds like most, if not all, of the other posters were completely in the dark about what the helicopters were doing and that wouldn’t be the case if they’d gotten the call like I did. I know I live very close to the locale of this incident but I’ve received about 5 of these calls in the past 6 months. I just wonder what the criteria is for recipients of the calls?

  16. If you “pieced the story together” from various sources, Debbie, it never occurred that there might not be enough pieces to make a, well, coherent story? One, anyway, meriting more than one paragraph? I always thought reporters should at least wait until they have a solid fact or two to play with.
    And may we now expect a more detailed explication tomorrow, which happens to be Tuesday?
    Perhaps it’s my own past (long past) military service, but the sound of a few helicopters overhead does not terrify me. At worst, they’ll turn out to be the “black helicopters” of cattle mutilation lore. At best the hapless snoops of CBS-News or something like “Shadow Traffic.”

  17. And Catseye, that you apparently know nothing about the genuine demands of journalism hardly excuses your ignorance above. Really.

  18. As a senior citizen living alone, a helicopter and search light is cause for concern. I thought it was a police copter searching for a criminal – got up and starting turning on my outdoor spot lights, rear deck lights, etc. because I have a deep backyard bordered by a lot of shrubs (and tall weeds!), backed by neighbors yards, all of which are also deep and could be hiding places. There are still a lot of older homeowners in town living in similar circumstances.
    I did not think about a lost child because I did not receive the usual automated police alert phone call.
    If we had a computer literate municipal workforce and police department with an active website, they might serve us and save themselves some phone calls by posting emergency incidents that might alarm people, or require our help. While we are waiting for the township to join us in the 21st century, it doesn’t hurt to have Baristanet on the beat.

  19. Yup, Cathar, I knew it wasn’t the Russians. And I don’t care to know the details of someone else’s personal troubles, so I’m fine with the level of information that lets me know a) there was no danger to my family and b) someone else’s family is now safe.
    In a situation like this, anything beyond that is just voyeurism. Do you really need to know the who’s, what’s where’s and wherefore’s of someone else’s family issue?

  20. A week or two ago, several heavy copters flew over my neihborhood in Bloomfield at low altitude and rattled everything.
    I think they were military. There must have been at least 10 to 15 of them.
    Pretty impressive sound and vibration levels were created by their passing.

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