Additional on Kyron Horman

For this delayed segment of Missing Person Monday, I had a few more thoughts on the disappearance of eight-year-old Kyron Horman

Kyron was reported missing from his elementary school on June 3, 2010.
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(1) New Searches--Same Area

Authorities are still focused on the area that they traced cell phone pings from Kyron Horman's stepmother,Terri Horman, and hope to conduct another search of Sauvie Island near Portland:

Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office hopes to carry out another search of areas of Sauvie Island next weekend (Note: OCT 9) in hopes of finding Kyron Horman, who disappeared four months ago.

“It depends on the weather and who we can get,” said Lt. Mary Lindstrand, spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office. “Most of the resources on the weekend are volunteers.” 

On Saturday, nearly 170 people, including searchers on foot, ATVs, horseback and with dogs, scoured sections of Sauvie Island and then more than 110 people returned for a new search effort on Sunday...

Sauvie Island includes 26,000 acres and just over 1,000 year-round residents.

Along with its expansiveness, the island has several lakes and ponds that make it very difficult to search.

One thing to note--citizen volunteers are doing quite a bit of looking on the island and I think that is a positive thing.*  With police having no specific places to search, finding any evidence pertaining to Kyron's disappearance is imperative.

*Note: Authorities did search the island again this weekend, and a related story is here.  Also, next week's Missing Person Monday post will provide an example of how one citizen can make enormous contribution in a case.

(2) School Safety Plans and School Reality

On August 12, 2010, an article about a groundskeeper named Dave Stensen working at the elementary school was posted. 

Apparently, authorities interviewed him about if he had seen Terri Horman's truck parked on an access road near the school.  Stensen stated that he did not see the vehicle in question, but was done mowing a field near the building at 8:30 am--15 minutes before Ms. Horman is said to have left the school.

Stenson did say tell the media this though:

“It seemed like just a pretty normal day,” he said.

“It was kind of damp and wet. It had been wet for a while and the fields were hard to mow.

(I) noticed that there was some children that came out the back door, and I thought, ‘please don’t come down and play soccer.’ But they came out and looked at some plants that were in the raised bed.”
Since there was a science fair that morning, students and other adults onsite were not subjected to the regular security provisions. 

In these cases, it is important for police to digest what security measures the school had in place, and then investigate what safety practices were actually followed that day.

For instance, school officials may have policies that state that certain exterior doors are secured and only supervised students are permitted to enter or go outside--when in reality and as Mr. Stensen described, kids were able to come and go from the school without attracting attention on that morning.

And if children were able to do this, it certainly can be argued that adults could have accessed the school unnoticed.

Certainly investigators can't afford to close their minds to all alternatives that could explain the disappearance, though there are many reasonable yet unanswered questions about Kyron's step-mother.
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Note: To read my guest blogger Crime Buff's thoughts on the Horman case from a few months ago, you can go here.

Photo was used from here.
 

22 comments:

Brian Miller said...

man, eight years old. crushing.

i go into a lot of the local schools in my line of work. the security is so varied...i go into ont that is lockdown...i have to be buzzed in...others i could walk right through and no one would ever know i was there...

Herding Cats said...

As a teacher, I am well-aware of how "open" some (actually most) campuses are in reality. This is really scary, and I think cases such as these should bring media attention to the fact that kids are not as safe at school as one would think. So unfortunate!

My Husband's Watching TV... said...

This is so scary! Why are some people so freakin' mean???

SuziCate said...

All these missing children make me so sad. There is one now I think in North Carolina that's been on the news for a couple of days. Breaks my heart. I just don't understand why and how people can be so evil.

Janna Qualman said...

Like the first commenter said, it's crushing. Scares me to think of such things.

Diane said...

Our school just put a security system in place. I guess it is necessary these days unfortunately....

MONICA-LnP said...

its a sad sad scary world our kids live in.
The local elementary school put tall fences all around with big locks, totally useless when they leave the cafeteria door open all day!

Stephen Tremp said...

When I was a kid I never had any of these fears. Its a much different world we live in today. I'm totally for the death penalty for kidnapping, especially children (this would not apply to spousal cases).

Stephen Tremp

Matthew Rush said...

So sad. Still nice to see you fighting the good fight Slam.

BobKat said...

Cute kid, Kyron Horman. A little kid immersed in nature, the wonder of the world. I'll bet he had a lot of fun at the science fair!

It is a distressing story. It's sad just knowing he's missing, and the concerns about what happened to him. But I find myself weighing in the effects to society when these things happen.

It concerns me the grip of fear it puts into society. As a kid in the 1950's my family feared the same things, we children were told the same thing - "beware of strangers bearing candy!"

What's changed I think is that in contrast to being well-informed, we also feel more and more powerless to stop it.

I think we are wrong to feel that way, if we do... just by being here, you're part of the solution. There are many ways one can help. The recent rescue of the young girl in Washington State (or CA, I don't have it in front of me) last week is evidence of that we can make a difference.

Slam... I especially found the grounds-keepers story of interest.

Thank-you...

kathryn said...

Oh, God. Just breaks my heart...and makes me wonder how we can ever let our children out of our sight.

"When children have to play inside so they don't disappear..."

That song just popped into my head. So sad that it's fitting...

Rhiannon Nicole said...

This is so sad. Gosh I couldn't even imagine. My prayers are with the families. And you think school is a safe haven?? Wow :(

jodeeluna said...

This is a terrifying story. To think that a child can be abducted from a school situation like this should sober us all.

aconnectiontomyheart said...

I have heard of the little fella's story, but unlike how media reports it, that he is probably stashed somewhere in an attic or basement, I find that theory hard to believe! I fear the worst here, little boys just dont disappear off the face of the earth, what are they to do, if their own mothers(well step here) have been plotting about ideas to get rid of them.. Heart breaking! And thanks for the investigative reporting.. Yes, who knows if the back door was open, who had access to it.. definitely something to think of!
Great work!

carma said...

between this story and the story of the abused child who is not missing in NC - very depressing :-( What is with these evil stepmoms???? and to think they are moms who have kids of their own too...

Bob G. said...

Slamdunk:
I know I'm whistling up a tree, but I do so pray they find this boy alive AND well...
This is one helluva world we're living in...but we CAN change it around, if we ALL decide to do so.

Only thing we had to worry about in my day was running into the street and getting hit...not hit UPON.


Good post AND comments by all.

Jen said...

I hope they find him. I pray he is one of the miracles.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I could never be a cop. These missing kid cases would do me in. I admire those individual who do it.

joanny said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
joanny said...

Slam Dunks

sorry spell check ....

That little boy is from my 'neck of the woods' well I live SE of that area, in the suburbs ... -So sad..
Makes one heartsick to read about it.
I hope the child is found so the family can find some peace whatever that may be,
So happy my children are grown up now.

Joanny

Thank you for the lovely comment on my blog, your comments are always appreciated and welcomed.

Momma Fargo said...

Sad case. Sounds like a lot of area to search. Makes you want to question new ideas on school security. When is it ever enough? Very scary for parents.

Miss Caitlin S. said...

I can't believe he has yet to be found!! I was just on Sauvie Island on Friday night for a haunted corn maze... beyond that, when I visit the island I'm usually on a beach surrounded by brush. Leads me to believe he could be anywhere. Under water, under brush, in corn fields.. ugh. Makes me tremendously sad to think about. I just hope there's an outcome soon.