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Three tips from public led to arrest of Amber Alert suspect

KIMBALL, S.D. -- Three tips from the public within about 10 minutes led to the arrest of a suspect involved in an Amber Alert on Monday night near Kimball.

KIMBALL, S.D. - Three tips from the public within about 10 minutes led to the arrest of a suspect involved in an Amber Alert on Monday night near Kimball.

Paul Brown, 38, of Maple Valley, Wash., was arrested on one count of abuse of or cruelty to a minor, the South Dakota Attorney General’s Office said Tuesday.

According to South Dakota Amber Alert, Brown left his home in Washington with his two children, ages 3 and 1, on Aug. 5. They were seen in Joliet, Wyo., on Monday, heading east on Interstate 90. Brown later made a purchase in Spearfish, S.D.

The state of South Dakota issued an Amber Alert at 10:11 p.m. Monday, which resulted in the identification of a vehicle and license plate that matched Brown. A South Dakota Highway Patrol trooper located the vehicle in Kimball and detained Brown without incident. The children were taking into temporary custody by the South Dakota Department of Social Services and were evaluated at a local hospital.

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety on Monday night said the children were safe.

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“The power and the importance of the Amber Alert system and the public were proven last night,” South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley said in a statement. “The system allows for community support with multiple eyes looking for children in danger and allowing law enforcement to focus their search efforts when time is so vital.”

This is the sixth Amber Alert issued in South Dakota since 2003.

According to Mike Murphy, program manager at the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, this is the 33rd case in which the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) led directly to the detainment of a suspect involved in an Amber Alert.

The Wireless Emergency Alert program is operated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. It distributes notifications from authorized federal, state, local and tribal government agencies that alert customers with capable devices of imminent threats to safety or an emergency situation. The messages are intended as a supplement to the existing Emergency Alert System, which broadcasts alerts over radio and television.

Brown faces a class 3 felony. If convicted, he could face up to 15 years in prison and up to a $30,000 fine.

The Child Abduction Amber Alert system is named after Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted and murdered in Arlington, Texas, in Jan. 13, 1996.

Related Topics: CRIMEKIMBALL
Luke Hagen was promoted to editor of the Mitchell Republic in 2014. He has worked for the newspaper since 2008 and has covered sports, outdoors, education, features and breaking news. He can be reached at lhagen@mitchellrepublic.com.
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