Father of child abducted in 1993 visits St. Louis to promote chi - KMOV.com

Father of child abducted in 1993 visits St. Louis to promote child safety

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After the 1993 California kidnapping and murder of a 12-year-old girl, the Klaas Foundation was formed to help teach child safety awareness to kids and parents worldwide. (Credit: KMOV) After the 1993 California kidnapping and murder of a 12-year-old girl, the Klaas Foundation was formed to help teach child safety awareness to kids and parents worldwide. (Credit: KMOV)
KIRKWOOD, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

After the 1993 California kidnapping and murder of 12-year-old Polly Klaas, her father Marc has been going around the country each year teaching child safety awareness and education to kids and parents. 

Marc Klaas, founder of the Klaas Kids Foundation, worked alongside Kirkwood Police Department on Saturday, offering digital fingerprinting and taking updated pictures of children free of charge. The documentation of the children will go into law enforcement databases.

“Gosh forbid something ever happened and she did go missing, then we would have her picture and fingerprints on file,” Sara Enloe, who got her toddler’s picture taken along with fingerprints at the event. 

Kirkwood Police say it’s important for children to get their prints and pictures updated every year as they grow and change so quickly. This will help in their investigation if a child does go missing.

“It gives us just such an amazing basis point and plateau to start with,” said Officer Gary Baldridge with Kirkwood PD. 

The participating children and parents went home with copies of their photos and fingerprints, as well as a packet with safety tips and a nine-point plan on what to do if a child does disappear. “We’re actually going to get her car seat checked as well while we're here,” said Enloe. 

This type of system was not in place back in 1993 when Polly Klass was kidnapped. Her body was not found for 2 months.

“We’ll be able to capture a forensic quality print on a child, even as young as a couple of months old, so it's really a very different process and nobody was doing what we're doing back in the 90's, which is why we started doing it,” said Klass, who helps with the fingerprinting at each event across the country. 

As a father, Klaas is using his tragedy to educate other parents and kids to prevent this from happening as much as possible.

“I started the Klaas Kids Foundation with the simple mission of stopping crimes against children, which we pursue in a lot of different arenas, this being bar far the coolest one,” said Klaas.

This event takes place at the Kirkwood Police Department every year, the first Saturday in October. 

Copyright 2017 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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