Rochester – New York State Senator Michael F. Nozzolio (R- Fayette) today joined Governor George Pataki, Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks and “America’s Most Wanted” founder John Walsh to launch an advertising campaign for New York State’s 100 Most Wanted Program, which targets the most dangerous fugitives in the state. The announcement was made at the Watts Building in Downtown Rochester.
“It is a pleasure to have John Walsh here, a native son of Auburn, and I thank him for all of his work in helping to apprehend New York’s most violent criminals,” said Senator Nozzolio, Chairman of the Senate Crime Victims, Crime and Correction Committee. “The launching of this important campaign will allow New Yorkers to help law enforcement apprehend violent fugitives and keep them off of our streets.”
Created to bring fugitives in New York State to justice, the 100 Most Wanted Program coordinates the resources of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies currently working to locate and apprehend dangerous felons.
The Most Wanted web site, www.nysmostwanted.com, allows people to view these criminals and anonymously offer information about their whereabouts by calling the tips line, (800) 262-4321. To date, the web site has received more than 500,000 hits and more than 100 leads have been called into the tips line, leading to the capture of 42 criminals on the list.
Senator Nozzolio and Governor Pataki also brought attention to Operation Safe Child, a program created to raise awareness about child safety and to give parents a proactive tool to keep their children safe. Operation Safe Child ID Cards contain the child’s name, basic biographical information (date of birth, gender, height, weight, hair color, eye color) and a fingerprint image of both index fingers. The card is made in less than two minutes and can easily be carried in a wallet or pocketbook.
In addition to being able to quickly provide important details to police agencies investigating child disappearances, the New York State SAFE CHILD ID Card will serve as an important tool when used in conjunction with the NYS AMBER Alert and Missing Child Alert Programs. These identification cards will allow essential missing child information to be electronically disseminated, statewide if necessary, within minutes and dramatically increase the possibility of bringing a missing child home unharmed.
When a child is reported missing, time can be the greatest adversary. Thirty-four percent of parents in the United States do not know their child's exact height, weight and eye color. Possessing up-to-date photographs and detailed information about a child can prove to be important proactive measures that can greatly assist local law enforcement officials to quickly respond to a child's disappearance.
Through an historic partnership with the New York State Police, New York State Sheriffs’ Association and New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services’ Missing and Exploited Children Clearinghouse has been working with law enforcement officials to provide Operation SAFE CHILD ID Cards to parents across the state.
“Thanks to important anti-crime initiatives implemented by Governor Pataki, crime continues to decline in New York State. The 100 Most Wanted Fugitives Program and Operation Safe Child continues the Governor’s efforts and I am proud to be his partner in giving law enforcement the tools to apprehend New York’s violent fugitives,” concluded Nozzolio.