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Missing DC Girls: 500 Disappearances in Metro Area Since Year Began

Image: Missing DC Girls: 500 Disappearances in Metro Area Since Year Began

Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La., the chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus speaks to members of the media at the White House in Washington on March 22, 2017. Black members of Congress are calling for the Justice Department to help police investigate a large number of missing children in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

By    |   Friday, 24 Mar 2017 05:38 PM

A fast-rising number of missing black and Latina girls from the Washington, D.C., area has prompted black congressional representatives to ask the Justice Department to help investigate the situation.

More than 500 juveniles were reported missing in the first three months of 2017, according to The Associated Press. Twenty-two of the disappearances were unsolved on March 22, police said.

D.C. police said there has not been an increase in missing persons, but that they’ve “just been posting them on social media more often,” Metropolitan Police spokeswoman Rachel Reid said, the AP reported.

A town hall meeting held at a neighborhood school to discuss concerns about missing minority girls was packed with hundreds of people on Wednesday. The D.C. area is about 48 percent black, according to the AP.

“Whether these recent disappearances are an anomaly or signals of underlying trends, it is essential that the Department of Justice and the FBI use all of the tools at their disposal to help local officials investigate these events, and return these children to their parents as soon as possible,” the AP reported Congressional Black Caucus chairman Cedric Richmond of Louisiana as saying.

Fox News reported that Richmond said he hopes to meet with United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions to discuss the issue, but the AP reported that no meeting is currently scheduled, although President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he would make Cabinet secretaries available to the caucus.

Local community activists and pastors expressed fears that the disappearances are due to human trafficking, Fox reported, and Trump has made concerted efforts to crack down on trafficking since taking office.

Concern is rising for the girls on Twitter, with the hashtag #missingDCgirls trending Friday afternoon.

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A fast-rising number of missing black and Latina girls from the Washington, D.C., area has prompted black congressional representatives to ask the Justice Department to help investigate the situation.
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2017-38-24
Friday, 24 Mar 2017 05:38 PM
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