Sheriff’s department promotes resource to track lost loved ones

ISHPEMING — The Marquette County Sheriff’s Office gave a demonstration earlier today to promote a valuable resource to locate lost family members.

The Marquette County Sheriff’s Office has had human tracking services available for about 8 years. They would like to encourage more people to utilize this opportunity. Currently only 11 individuals are participating in the program that can benefit a variety of people.

“Families that have loved ones that have Alzheimer’s, dementia, or autism,” said County Commissioner District 2 Joe Derocha, “this program would assure that in the event of a situation where one of your loved ones gets lost, the Marquette County Sheriff’s Department can locate them and locate them in a hurry.”

The subject wears a bracelet that deputies can use to track. Every person on the system has their own 3 digit code that central dispatch uses. Once a person is reported, the Sheriff’s Department will ask the guardian or caregiver some questions to speed up the process.

“We want to know where the last known location of where they saw the individual and then if they have some kind of direction and then that’s where we’ll meet,” said Marquette County Undersheriff Michael Klein, “so the call would go in, we’d activate search and rescue team, the deputies would come out and start and then they would start tracking them.”

The tracking device works up to about one and half miles away from the bracelet.

“Wherever you get the best signal, you walk in that direction for quite a ways, stop, and then keep turning the antenna back and forth,” said Sgt. Errikk Decker with the Marquette County Sheriff’s Office, “and then it’s just a process of elimination until you visually see the person.”
In order to yield the best results, timely reporting of missing individuals is key.

“In the event that you can’t find them, don’t wait, don’t go looking for them,” said Volunteer Coordinator for Marquette County Life Tracker Program Yvonne Clark, “call 911 and search and rescue will come out.”

If you would like more information on how to sign up a loved one for the program, Undersheriff Michael Klein said he would be more than happy to help.

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