Los Angeles

Emergency Alert Sent to Phones in LA is Canceled Immediately. Here’s What Happened


What sounded like an AMBER Alert sent phones in Southern California blaring Friday afternoon in an emergency alert notification from CHP that was immediately canceled.

The alert sent just before 12 p.m. PST pointed to an endangered missing case involving a 92-year-old woman.

But just minutes after it was sent, another mobile push alert followed saying it was canceled.

The push alert led to a Twitter link to CHP Alerts, where users were still confused, and chiming in on the thread.

There was a follow-up push alert saying the woman had been located safely.

NBCLA reached out to the Los Angeles Police Department who confirmed the call was originally a grand theft auto and kidnapping report.

At around 7 a.m., LAPD went to the 6300 block of W. 3rd Street to investigate the car theft with a 92-year-old woman inside.

The car was left running with the woman inside.

It was stolen from that area, then found later in the 8500 block of Kirkwood St.

The woman was found unharmed, and the thief was taken into custody, police said.

“These moments are why we @JoinLAPD—it’s why we wear the badge,” the LAPD said in a tweet.

What is an AMBER Alert?

An AMBER Alert is a voluntary partnership between law enforcement and media broadcasters that began in 1996 after the brutal death of 9-year-old Amber Hagerman. She was abducted and murdered near her home in Arlington, Texas.

A special on Peacock details Amber’s life with her family leading up to the slaying, and her impact with the implementation of the nationwide program.

There are criteria that must be met to send an AMBER Alert

  • Confirmation that an abduction has occurred or a child was taken by anyone, including, but not limited to, a custodial parent or guardian.
  • The victim is 17 years of age or younger, or an individual with a proven mental or physical disability.
  • The victim is in imminent danger of serious bodily injury or death.
  • There is information available that, if disseminated to the public, could assist in the safe recovery of the victim.

AMBER Alert plans were implemented statewide in California in 2002, putting CHP in charge.

What is an Endangered Missing Advisory?

An Endangered Missing Advisory is an alert not just for children, but for anyone who went missing under suspicous circumstances.

There are guidelines that should be met in order to send an EMA, per the CHP:

  • Do the circumstances fail to meet other alert criteria?
  • Is the person missing under unexplained or suspicious circumstances?
  • Is the person believed to be in danger because of age, health, mental or physical disability, or the environment or weather conditions; is he or she in the company of a potentially dangerous person; or, is there any other factor that may put the person in peril?
  • Is there information that, if disseminated to the public, could assist the public in the safe recovery of the missing person?

If you spot anyone after seeing them in an Endangered Missing Advisory, call 911, and make note of the location, and try to get a description of the car they’re traveling in.


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