Legislators send Caylee's Law to McCrory

Posted May 7, 2013

— Five years after Florida toddler Caylee Anthony disappeared and was later found dead, North Carolina lawmakers on Tuesday approved legislation that would make it a crime not to report a missing child in a timely manner.

Caylee's Law now heads to Gov. Pat McCrory for his signature.

Under the legislation, parents and caregivers would be required to report a missing child within 24 hours, and anyone else who suspects that a child is missing also would have to report their suspicions to law enforcement. Failure to do so would be a felony for parents and caregivers and a misdemeanor for third parties.

People acting in good faith who mistakenly report a child as missing would be immune from civil or criminal liability, but any deliberately misleading reports would result in a felony charge.

Casey Anthony failed to report her 2-year-old daughter missing for nearly a month in 2008, and the girl's body was found months later in some nearby woods. A jury acquitted Anthony of a murder charge, but she was found guilty of lying to a police officer.

A dozen states have since adopted laws requiring people to report missing children. North Carolina's legislation also creates penalties for failure to report child abuse or concealing the death of a child.


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  • Terkel May 8, 2013

    As terrible as this story was, we don't need any more knee-joik laws in response to a single incident. Just as with gun control, criminals will disregard the law, decent people don't need it.

  • Wake1 May 8, 2013

    I don't object to this law, but it is a shame there has to be a law requiring this, as any normal caring adult would immediatley do this if they thought a child missing.