Georgia Emergency Search and Rescue available to look for missing people

The Atlanta area has seen a high number of kids go missing in the last few weeks. One local nonprofit says they can help if people would just call them.

According to the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, at least 12 kids have gone missing from Georgia, most from metro Atlanta, in the last month.

Now Atlanta Police are asking for help to locate two more: sisters 13-year-old Brea Billings and 14-year-old Lauren Billings. Their family reports they went missing on Friday. They are among more than a dozen teens and kids who have gone missing from Georgia in the last month.

"Right now, we have kids all across Gwinnett County especially. We have a lot of Latino families that are missing their kids. Dekalb County, Atlanta, Hall County, I can go on. The list is long of kids that are missing right now," said Angel Alonso, a board member of the nonprofit Georgia Emergency Search and Rescue.

Their team goes out and helps find missing children. But Alonso says they can only assist when either the family of a missing person or law enforcement requests them to. "We're here. Call us. We have the experience for this and we need to search for these kids," Alonso said.

He mentioned they heard about 12-year-old Maria Gomez, who went missing in Gainesville more than a week ago, and requested to help in that case. There's now a $20,000 reward being offered for her safe return. Gordon says they wish they had been called about this case sooner.

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"Time is of the essence, and we'd rather find them quickly than turn around or wait hours or even days and then hear, ‘Oh, by the way, we have a missing person.’ And that's what happens a lot," said Brett Gordon, also on the board for the nonprofit.

APD has listed the Billings sisters as runaways, like many agencies do when a child willingly runs away. But Alonso says that classification can be problematic. "That's when you start saying, ‘Oh, they just ran away. They'll come back if they want to come back. And if not, you know,’ No. You have to investigate things thoroughly," Alonso said.

He says oftentimes those kids who run away are being enticed by predators on social media. He gave one recent example of two girls who went missing from Gwinnett County and were classified as runaways. "One of the girls was found in Atlanta, in Clayton County, in a house where she was being trafficked. That was not a runaway. That was a pedophile. That was someone who was a predator," Alonso said.

Both he and Gordon urge anyone who has a missing family member to call them right away. They say they have at least 30 years of experience in finding missing persons between them and even have a K-9 unit. The group is on call 24/7 and can be reached at the following numbers:

  • Angel Alonso: 470-525-8695
  • Brett Gordon: 678-254-5690
  • John Clark: 404-309-7386

Or you can email Georgia Emergency Search and Rescue at