How Often Do Missing People Get Found?

Missing episodes are a triggering topic for many; from the returned, families to the general public. The moment a loved one reports someone missing

Missing episodes are a triggering topic for many; from the returned, families to the general public. The moment a loved one reports someone missing is a crucial moment not just for the person but also for the investigation.  It is from when the report is made to law enforcement that the countdown to find them begins.

Without the accuracy in numbers, knowing the exact causes of people found missing is a challenge. Out of all the people that go missing some are never reported. And out of all those reported, the majority are found within the first 48 hours, however, hundreds are never seen again.

When it comes to determining how often missing people are found it all depends on how soon the report was done. The first 72 hours are vital so as soon as you realize someone you care about is missing contact law enforcement. The sooner they assess the situation the better chances are for finding them or learning what happened to them.


What happens when someone goes missing?

Whether a person goes missing intentionally or intentionally there is always vulnerability to them. The harm spectrum for those who go missing ranges from one being they are assaulted, raped, or murdered to those that experience little to no harm. While those who decide to go missing intentionally do it for sound reasons, like to escape abuse and other worse consequences, it is important to report their cases.

The police will ask questions pertaining to the missing persons and establish their level of risk. While also considering factors like race, sexuality, gender, and religious beliefs they will be categorized as a low, medium, or high risk. When dealing with a high-risk case, police are deployed, an investigation officer appointed, a press strategy established and the Missing Persons Bureau is notified. If the person is under 18 the Children Services is also informed. The bureau will use their expertise on previous cases to advise the police on likely places to look for the individual.


Why do people go missing?

Rarely do people go missing without a reason? It is why when police officers are investigating the case they look at it as a problem in the individual’s life rather than the event. Abuse, shame, disappointment, mental illness, drug abuse, and abduction are just scratching the surface for why people go missing. The authorities are going to ask questions regarding the person like whether the person has a tendency to disappear for long hours, did they leave with their personal items?

Not everyone that goes missing does so involuntarily. While there are many abduction cases, some people just want to disappear. Let’s look at the different groups of people and the most common issues raised with their disappearance.



There is a wide range of reasons why most children and teenagers go missing but here are some of the most common ones.

  1. Conflict, abuse, and neglect at home

Home should be a safe haven for children and teenagers; however, when it is not, most of them are forced to run away. Studies show that half of missing children experience neglect or abuse at home.

  1. Sexual exploitation

The chances of a sexually exploited minor going missing have risen to a soaring 70%. Return interviews of these children and teenagers show that one in seven were sexually exploited.

  1. Trafficking

Everyone is four teens missing have been reported to have been part of criminal exploitation. From human trafficking, drug trafficking, interview conducted with returned victims have revealed that



  1. Mental health issues

Almost 80% of adults who go missing are diagnosed or undiagnosed with mental health problems. These individuals have often displayed risks of self-harm and suicide. Additionally, out of 10 elderly reported with dementia 4 go missing unintentionally.

  1. Homelessness

Financial problems are among the reasons why adults go missing. Without monetary upkeep to survive on some individual leave and end up becoming homeless.

  1. Family problems

Family relations sometimes put a strain on individuals until they choose to leave. Relationship breakdowns have also been attributed to missing people.

  1. Abuse or domestic violence

Many adults choose to leave their homes mainly because they are facing abuse from family or domestic abuse from their partners.

Missing cases are tricky to maneuver because they are time-sensitive, however, the police officers,  investigators, social media, and the public are assets to missing people investigations. If you notice someone missing take action by reporting it immediately as it could literally save a life.


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