Home News Stories 2014 May Investigating Child Abductions In Their Own Words: CARD Team Members Reflect

In Their Own Words: CARD Team Members Reflect

In Their Own Words: CARD Team Members Reflect

Members of the CARD team—seasoned investigators with experience in crimes against children cases that are often multi-jurisdictional and multi-agency—have purposely chosen this line of work because they care deeply about the welfare of all children. Here are personal reflections from four particular CARD team agents on what they do and why they do it.

What made you want to become a CARD team member?

“There’s nothing more important than protecting our children.”
- Special agent, New Orleans

“I had just finished working two child abductions. The cases were physically and mentally exhausting, but the nature and innocence of the victims was such that I wanted to help in future cases as well.”
- Special agent, Jacksonville

“After inheriting a high-profile cold case involving a missing 6-year-old girl, I learned how important initial documentation is to someone coming in many years later with only the case file for review. I hoped that this unique perspective could add a layer of experience to an already very experienced group of agents on the CARD team.”
- Special agent, Little Rock

“The team was everything I’ve trained for in my career. It was a chance to be involved in something good, and I wanted to be a part of it.”
- Special agent, San Diego

How do you contribute to the FBI’s mission to investigate crimes against children…and to the communities you’ve been deployed to?

“To give these kinds of cases the full attention they deserve, I realized that investigators needed to know me long before another child went missing. So after joining the team, I made myself known to detectives from every department in and around my community, and I continue to work alongside them to this day.”
- Special agent, San Diego

“By bringing subject matter experts into investigations.”
- Special agent, New Orleans

“Child abduction cases don’t occur all the time, but when one does, having a team of investigators familiar with the process on scene is comforting to the agencies involved and to the communities, who recognize law enforcement is doing all it can do to safely locate and return the missing child.”
- Special agent, Jacksonville

“Unfortunately, we’ve had our share of child abductions in my office, and the CARD team—in conjunction with our state and local partners—has been able to quickly establish investigative teams to take on each investigative aspect required to effectively search for the missing child.”
- Special agent, Little Rock

Can you talk about experiences working with local and state partners during these kinds of investigations?

“The callouts which I’ve been assigned have had outstanding investigators at all levels. These have been extremely dedicated individuals willing to take on an investigative role who have to be told to go home and get some rest.”
- Special agent, Little Rock

“I can’t say enough about our state and local partners. Having started my career as a police officer, I have the utmost respect for their dedication in serving their communities. No matter where I’ve responded in the country on these matters, I witness police officers setting aside their personal lives and families to look after those in the cities and towns they serve.”
- Special agent, Jacksonville

“I know that, even today, there’s a stigma associated with the FBI supposedly marching in and ‘taking over’ an investigation. But everyone I’ve worked with has realized that this is not our CARD team mission. Our mission, just like theirs, is to find that missing child, and we work side by side to do that.”
- Special agent, San Diego

“My work with state and local law enforcement while on the CARD team has made me see how these types of investigations bring people together. I remain in contact with local officers from every one of my previous deployments.”
- Special agent, New Orleans

What’s your best day ever working on the CARD team…and your worst day?

“Best day—I had hair standing up on my arms when I heard over the radio that shots had been fired, a suspect was down, and the minor child we had been looking for five days had been safely recovered. Worst day—I remember exactly where I was standing when I was told that the young teen girl we had been so intently looking for had been found in the woods, buried in a shallow hole. My heart just broke—she was so innocent.”
- Special agent, San Diego

“Best day—the day that a 5-year-old boy was recovered unharmed after 12 hours from the beginning of the investigation. Investigators from several states came together very quickly with one goal in mind. There was a pond next to the child’s home and I saw many officials arriving on the scene just staring at the pond as they walked by—we all had the same fear. Worst days are when you are hit with the realization that you are searching for a body.”
- Special agent, Little Rock

Best day? Every day being surrounded by incredibly dedicated individuals on the CARD team. Worst days always have to do with the tragic circumstances under which we sometimes work and seeing the communities and involved agencies going through the grieving process when an innocent child is lost. We can only hope to comfort them and help them stay focused on the mission of bringing to justice whoever was responsible for the child’s death.”
- Special agent, Jacksonville

“Best day is when there is a positive recovery and the child is safe. Worst day is when you get the news that a child was recovered deceased.”
- Special agent, New Orleans

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