Missing Children: How Politics Helped Start the Scandal
by John Edward Gill
Jay Howell didn't want to make only $33,000 a year.
As an aide to a United States Senator, that's the salary he earned
in 1981 when John Walsh's six-year-old son, Adam, vanished in July of
that year and was found deceased. He'd met Walsh because Howell
worked for then-Senator Paula Hawkins, Republican from Florida.
Howell was from Jacksonville, Florida, and Hawkins showed an interest
in Walsh's case. Walsh had received much attention. He'd been
interviewed by Florida newspapers and had appeared on national
Both Howell and Walsh figured Congressional activity would create
even more media interest and introduce the need for a national
clearing house on "missing" children. Although the U.S.
Justice Department already had the National Crime Infomation Center
(NCIC) which listed felons and missing children, both men felt there
still could be a federally-funded, non-law enforcement agency which
dealt exclusively with "missing" children. Howell could be
its first executive director with Walsh as a paid "consultant."
Children: next page...
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