It's every parent's nightmare. You're shopping at a grocery store or out at the park and your child slips away. It happens more than you think.
Roughly 800,000 children are reported missing in the U-S every year. That breaks down to about 2,000 kids per day. The Wichita Falls Police Department is setting to change that by encouraging parents to have a plan.
"We would like to believe the world is safe and everything is wonderful," said Sergeant Harold McClure, Public Information Officer for Wichita Falls Police. "We still need to take care of them."
Police say it is important to have a meeting place, have a plan set for when your child gets off the school bus or gets separated, if your child is being abducted, have them yell for help loudly and if they see anything suspicious, stay away.
"If the children do not know who this person is, it's okay not to go up to them," said McClure.
That is important because Sergeant McClure said predators know what to say to get a child to come with them.
"You always hear those stories of the guy came up and he was looking for a lost puppy," said McClure. "No grown adult is going to need the aid of a child to look for a puppy."
"As parents, we need to talk to our kids. make them mindful of their surroundings, be aware of your surroundings even as children," said McClure.
Moms in the community say they make sure to tell their kids to be aware of their surroundings every time they go out. Many moms also use "code words" for when their child gets picked up by someone other than a family member so the child knows it is safe.
McClure said that if you ever see anything suspicious that involves a child when you are out and not to hesitate to call the police. He said in cases like this, it is better to be safe than sorry.