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NJ Transit Police Locate Missing Autistic Child

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the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Newark NJ, A missing autistic child located and a family reunited thanks to diligent police work initiated by an observant commuter.

On Tuesday night, NJ Transit Police Officer Brian Zavistovski responded to a commuter’s tip describing a little girl who was possibly in need of help at Hoboken Terminal. Upon locating the juvenile, Officer Zavistovski immediately recognized communication barriers. The 10-year-old juvenile was non-verbal and she did not respond to his attempts to communicate.

She was brought to the NJTPD District 3 Police Office where Officer Christina Hicks quickly developed a rapport with her and began limited communication. Officer Hicks was able to get the juvenile to draw a picture. Next she encouraged her to write her name on a piece of paper. Officer Hicks then asked her how old she was. The juvenile replied, “10”. All communication from then on was again limited and nonverbal. Luckily the officers had all the information they needed to begin searching to assist the juvenile.

While Officer Brian Lee scoured surveillance footage to track the juvenile’s travels; Lieutenant Matthew Coyle and Officer Hicks successfully kept her calm. Officer Zavistovski and Lieutenant John Sullivan reached out to numerous agencies and police departments in attempts to identify the juvenile with negative results. That is, until Officer Lee tracked the juvenile to the Port Authority Path System.

Port Authority Police Officers tracked the juvenile’s travels via surveillance footage and found that she boarded at their World Trade Station. Lt. Sullivan contacted the NYPD Missing Persons Division and the NYPD 81st Precinct responded with a missing flyer for an autistic ten-year-old little girl. The very juvenile the NJTPD Officers had at our District 3 Office was pictured on the flyer. The juvenile was turned over to the care of NYPD Officers to ultimately be reunited with her family.

Another excellent job and coordinated effort by an observant commuter, New Jersey Transit Police Officers, Port Authority Police and NYPD!​

One thought on “NJ Transit Police Locate Missing Autistic Child

  1. Nice job all around

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