HARRISONBURG, Va. -- With the recent disappearance of Nelson County teenager Alexis Murphy, we're taking a closer look at local protocol for Harrisonburg police.
A police officer said it depends on the type of call they receive.
First, the officer talks to family and friends.
From there, officers can use people from Criminal Investigations and also ask School Resource Officers for help.
Sergeant Jason Kidd said these officers are valuable because the resource officers know the kids in school.
That includes who students hang out with as well as information about any fights or conflicts that may have happened in the past.
Sergeant Kidd recommends that people give as much information and background to case workers.
Often, Kidd said what may seem unimportant is information that officers need to help with the case.
Sometimes, breaks in cases happen quickly.
"Sometimes it's difficult to inform the parents of everything that's going on in the case just because a lot of times it will happen very quickly. So sometimes media or social media may sometimes beat us to the punch in that they may find something out before we do, but really it is important to stress a relationship between whoever is making the complaint and the police department," said Sergeant Kidd.
Sergeant Kidd has some advice for parents when it comes to social media.
"It can't hurt to just check their phone from time to time to see what they're doing. And that's really important because a lot of the time parents may think that there kids would not be involved in something they shouldn't be because they're not using a computer. Whereas they could easily be using their phone almost anywhere," said Kidd.
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