East Hawaii News

Missing Child Matter Prompts Custodial Interference Case

March 16, 2012, 6:17 PM HST
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A family that kept a missing Kurtistown child overnight Wednesday is being investigated by Big Island police.

Police said Thursday that a family found Disen Hue-Aragaki, 9, of Kurtistown wandering alone Wednesday on 40th Avenue in Orchidland. Hue-Aragaki was reported missing Wednesday afternoon after he ran away from his home near J. Hara Store after having an argument with his mother.

Police said the family, which has not been identified, kept Hue-Aragaki overnight and fed him. On Thursday, family members took Hue-Aragaki with them to Hilo. The family did not call police until they learned from a relative that the boy had been reported missing, police said.

A custodial interference case has been initiated in connection with the incident. Assistant Chief Henry Tavares said the family should have called police immediately.

“We want the public to understand that it is not ok to keep a lost child overnight before calling police,” Tavares said in prepared statement. “The proper response is to call 9-1-1 as soon as possible after you find a child who is lost or wandering alone without adult supervision.”

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Police are also urging parents to make sure they have a current photo of their children, along with other important details, such as physical description and medical history, that will help police if a child goes missing.

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The public can also sign up for Nixle alerts which allow them to receive email or text messages from the Police Department. To subscribe to Nixle alerts, go to the Police Department’s website at www.hawaiipolice.com and click on “Sign up for email and text alerts.”

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