Missing person cases often neglected in Iowa

About 350 people are considered missing in Iowa on any given day, but most of those receive little attention from police.

The Des Moines Register investigated how missing-person cases are handled in Iowa and identified several concerns about the system.

Although every missing-person case could have a tragic ending, most are resolved simply when a runaway child returns home or an adult who left intentionally is found.

Gerard Meyers with the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation says it's a challenge for law enforcement to stay vigilant about these cases.

The newspaper found that many cases are largely ignored as runaways. And the missing-person database is often outdated and lacks detailed descriptions and photographs. Some police departments do little follow-up.