U.S. Marshals announced the safe rescue of 8 “highly endangered” missing children in Indiana over the weekend as part of “Operation Homecoming.” Similar operations in nearby states have led to the rescue of 72 children since mid-August.
The coordinated search in Indiana, which included multiple state and local agencies, led to the arrest of one suspect, per a news release from the U.S. Marshals.
“Federal investigators coordinated with IMPD and NCMEC to recover eight highly endangered missing children resulting in one arrest of an adult subject for charges filed, including alleged crimes related to parental kidnapping, intimidation, weapons possession and custodial interference,” the statement read in part.
“These children, between the ages of 6 and 17, were considered to be some of the most at-risk and challenging recovery cases in the area, based on indications of high-risk factors such as victimization of child sex trafficking, child exploitation, sex abuse, physical abuse and medical or mental health conditions,” the statment continued.
The children were turned over to the Indiana Department of Child Services. Further details on the case have not been released.
“The Marshals are committed to assisting state and local agencies with locating and recovering endangered missing children to help prevent their falling victim to crimes of violence and exploitation,” Dan McClain, U.S. Marshal for the Southern District of Indiana, said following the rescue. “The message that we wish to convey to the missing children and their families is that we will use every resource at our disposal to find you.”
In late August, U.S. Marshals announced that a similar sting in Ohio dubbed “Operation Safety Net” recovered 25 missing children in its first two weeks, although the operation is ongoing.