Missing Children

Hugs and tears mark the state's eighth annual Missing Children's Day ceremony.

The event is held on the second Monday of each September and this year fell on September 11th, the fifth anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania.

This also is the date when three of Florida's missing children disappeared: Jimmy Ryce of Miami-Dade County in 1995, Amanda Brown of Seffner in 1998 and Zachary Bernhardt of Clearwater in 2000.

Jimmy and Amanda were murdered and their killers are on death row, but Zachary remains missing.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement officials say last year almost 50,000 children were reported missing in Florida, but less than one percent were considered victims of predatory abductions.

Runaways accounted for 91 percent of the juveniles reported missing. Many of the others were taken in custody disputes.

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