Compliments of the Spanish Fork Police Department
Keeping Your Child Safe
One of the major goals of the Spanish Fork Police Department is to help our citizens live in this community in safety. One of those areas is Child safety.
The following information will help with:
- How to make a home DNA kit for your child
- Safety Tips for protecting your youth and
- Forms to make your own identification kits which include finger prints.
Parents our encouraged to utilize this information. If any questions arise or further information is needed please contact the Police Department at 804-4700.
DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid)
Just as each person has a unique set of fingerprints, every cell in one's body contains the chemical DNA, a building block of one's genetic makeup. Genes are the blueprints for our bodies. They make our eyes brown or our hair black, give us our mother's nose or dad's ears. The science of DNA typing is based upon the fact that no two persons, except identical twins, have identical DNA.
DNA can be used by law enforcement to identify missing or lost children or missing adults who suffer from Alzheimer's disease. The DNA could also be used to identify unknown deceased persons or persons involved in major disasters, by comparing the deceased's DNA with a DNA sample taken previously.
Homemade DNA Kit:
Collecting DNA of family members can be simple and inexpensive. If a situation arises and law enforcement needs DNA of a family member, give this kit to them. The following instructions came from Special Agent Joseph Errera, a forensic expert at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. The DNA sample will keep for many years. Please carefully follow all instructions.
You will need:
- 2 envelopes
- Latex gloves
- 4 Q-tip type swabs
- Fingernail clipper
- 3 sheets of white paper (8 ½ x 11)
- Pluck 20 or so head hairs and wrap in paper.
- Clip fingernails and wrap in paper
To collect buccal cell samples from inside the person's mouth:
- Make sure the person doesn't eat or drink anything for 30 minutes prior to taking the sample
- Wear Latex gloves
- Take 2 samples from each cheek. Collect the sample by rolling the swab around inside the cheek for about 10 seconds.
- Place on paper to air dry (30-60 minutes)
- Place 4 dried Q-tips inside envelope
- Place hair samples, fingernails and Q-tip bag inside the second envelope
- Label bags with: the person's name, date of collection and the name of the person who took the sample
Store in freezer
Help Your Kids Stay Safe
- Update Fingerprint/Identification Card and DNA Kits frequently and keep in a safe and accessible location.
- Teach your child their complete name, address and phone number (including area code) at a very early age. Teach them how to make collect calls from a pay phone.
- Keep all emergency numbers within view of your phone. Teach your children how to call 911.
- A child should never answer the door without an adult present.
- When answering the phone they should not give out personal information and never tell a caller they are alone.
- NOTHING IS BETTER THAN PARENTAL SUPERVISION. Your children should receive permission and NEVER go anywhere alone. Encourage your children to use the Buddy System, two or more children when playing or walking to and from school.
- Warn your children not to talk to strangers. Explain what a stranger is. A stranger is "anyone" you and your children do not know well.
- Your children should never answer questions, give directions, accept gifts or help an unfamiliar person find anything.
- Warn your children never to approach a vehicle. If approached, a child should be taught to run in the opposite direction the vehicle is traveling.
- Children should be prepared. Teach your children the facts about abduction early. If handled simply as another fact of life - another coping skill - children need not be inordinately frightened about the topic of abduction.
- Children should be taught what areas of their body are private and should not be touched by anyone.
- Children should be encouraged to trust their instinct. If your children see someone suspicious or something that makes them feel uncomfortable they be taught to run to safety. If someone unfamiliar approaches them they should "Scream and Run."
- Coordinate a "Crime Watch" program in your neighborhood. This will bring your community together to create a safer environment for all neighborhood children. Call your local law enforcement agency for more information.
- Instill confidence in your children by always having open, loving and gentle communication. Learn to listen.
- Love and cuddle your children. Children need consistent affection from the key figures in their life. Many pedophiles will shower a child with affection in an attempt to gain their trust and manipulate sexual activity.
- An important tip for all ages - In an abduction situation you have a better chance of surviving if you do everything in your power to avoid being taken to a second crime scene.
Tips For Protecting Your Child
Tibby Milne of the Utah Council for Crime Prevention said the calls have been coming in all day from concerned parents asking for advice on how to protect their children.
“Parents are saying ooh! What can I do? What do I need to do? Have I done everything?” she said.
Milne said role-playing is the key.
“What would happen if someone said I want you to come see the puppies in my car?” Milne said as an example. “Role play as if someone's trying to take hold of their arm or pull them away. Tell them to be very noisy and make a lot of noise so some adult might hear and be able to assist them.”
Milne said make sure young children know their parent’s name and phone number. Have a family password--and tell the child never to go with anyone who doesn't know the password. Know where your children are. Talk about the importance of keeping doors and windows locked.
If your child is abducted, police said there are other things you can do to help them find your child.
Parents need to have current photos. If you have a child who's under the age of seven have two photos because children change so fast. Photos with a plain, light background are easier to see when sent over the Internet or television.
“The main thing again is a photo. Have it available so if this does happen you don't have to search your files. Parents are distraught at the time and that's the last thing they want to look for.”
Know your child’s height and weight and any unique identifiers such as freckles or a specific scar that would help police identify them.
A current set of dental records, fingerprints and an ID card are also recommended.
Finger Print and Identification Forms
You may download forms for both finger print and personal identification by clicking these links.
If you need help or have questions please feel free to call the Spanish Fork Police Department at 801-804-4700.