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      Law enforcement professionals train for child abduction cases

      ORANGEBURG (WACH) - Around 30 law enforcement professionals from across South Carolina turned to a man with decades of experience in missing child cases to learn life saving tips Wednesday morning.

      Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell decided to invite Craig Hill, associate director of training and outreach for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, to Orangeburg after attending a seminar Hill taught in Virginia.

      "I thought it was very important to bring it here because what I attended, that training, it was an eye opener," said Ravenell.

      Hill has more than 35 years of law enforcement experience. He was a deputy police chief in Kansas City before working with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

      "The first case I ever worked was a 10-year-old girl that was abducted and left in a field to die. Through the grace of the good lord, she lived," said Hill. " When I took her picture for the district attorney, I'll never forget. I appeared through that eye piece and as I clicked that shutter, I looked into the eyes of a 10-year-old angel who had been victimized by evil."

      Hill says around 2,100 children are reported as missing in the United States every day, and children of all ages are at risk.

      Sheriff Ravenell hopes the training will help his officers be prepared with the latest and best information when time is of the essence.

      According to Hill, law enforcement may only have up to three hours after an abduction before the child is harmed or killed. He emphasized that each case is unique and they should be evaluated individually.

      Hill's advice to parents on how to protect their children is simple.

      "Communicate with your children," said Hill.