Archive for Thursday, May 12, 2005

Identi-Kid slated for Saturday

May 12, 2005

The Eudora Police Department has teamed up with Family Memories Scrapbooks to help parents record identifying information for their children.

Parents can bring their children to Family Memories Scrapbooks from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday to receive an Identi-Kid packet for each child. There is no cost for the service.

Eudora Police Chief Greg Dahlem said the Identi-Kid packets are much more advanced than the old packets, which featured fingerprinting. The newer packets hold a DNA sample taken from the inside of a child's cheek with a cotton swab. The sample is transferred to a pad inside the packet that will hold the DNA information as long as the packet is kept at room temperature.

Dahlem and Corporal Tom Willis will be taking most of the DNA samples, and parents are welcome to take the samples for children who would be more comfortable with a parent.

The Identi-Kid booklet has room for a photo of each child, forms for medical information and personal information. Dahlem said parents could also take the packet to a child's dentist to have a dental chart completed.

Parents can document any physical characteristics of their children, including any scars or any other identifying marks.

Dahlem said once the packets are complete, they should be kept in a lock box or other secure storage area. But in order to keep the DNA sample viable the packet should never be frozen or refrigerated.

"The DNA is the most valuable part of this kit," Dahlem said.

Dahlem said his department and Family Memories Scrapbooks decided to hold the Identi-Kid event as a service to the people of Eudora.

"It's a good community service," he said. "It's another way of helping us to identify a child if, God forbid, something were to happen to one of them."

Dahlem said there were plenty of packets available for anyone who would like to participate in the program. The Eudora Police Department will also make the packets available at EudoraFest on Oct. 1.

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