Press Release

For Immediate Release
October 25, 2002

Washington D.C.
FBI National Press Office
(202) 324-3691

Dick Tracy Comic Strip

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and the Tribune Media Services Company of Chicago, Illinois, are working together again, this time in finding missing children. The Tribune Company distributes the popular cartoon strip, Dick Tracy, which is written by mystery writer Mike Kilian and drawn by Pulitzer Prize winner Dick Locher.

Beginning on October 20, 2002, and running daily through December 15, 2002, Dick Tracy will feature a story of a missing/abducted child. With permission from families around the United States, the FBI is providing Mr. Kilian and Mr. Locher with pictures and descriptive information of the actual missing/abducted children. During the same period, several profiles of actual missing or abducted children will appear in the Crimestoppers column. In addition, the National Center will provide safety tips for parents and children on how to be safe, and how not to talk with or go anywhere with strangers and people you do not know.

This initiative continues an on-going cooperative relationship between the FBI and Tribune Media Services. In 1999, the Dick Tracy strip profiled all the fugitives who, at the time, were on the FBI's "Ten Most Wanted Fugitives" list. At the same time, Dick Tracy successfully caught a "Top Ten" fugitive with the public's help in the cartoon strip. Through the cartoon hero's more than 70 years of history, Dick Tracy has fought many kinds of criminals and solved numerous types of cases that have followed real-life situations occurring around the U.S.

"It was a great way not only to publicize very dangerous fugitives, but to educate the public about the FBI and the 'Top Ten' list," said Bruce Gebhardt, the Deputy Director of the FBI. "Dick Tracy profiling missing and abducted children is a natural extension of the fugitive publicity program at the FBI. Thousands of pairs of eyes will see these kids and hopefully, the cases can be solved and the public will learn more about the FBI and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children," Gebhardt said.

The FBI suggests that if readers of the Dick Tracy comic strip recognize any of the children profiled this fall, they should call the police or the nearest FBI office. Telephone numbers are in the front of telephone books. In addition, actual photographs of missing and abducted children may be seen 24/7 on the FBI's Internet site: http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/kidnap/kidmiss.htm and on the National Center's Internet site: http://www.missingkids.com.

Dick Tracy appears in more than 100 newspapers around the United States including
The Washington Times, Orange County Register (California), The Chicago Tribune, and
The Houston Chronicle.

Anyone with information about missing children or fugitives are asked to contact the nearest FBI office. If outside the United States, contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

#####



| 2002 Press Releases | FBI Home Page |