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‘Phylicia’s Law’ passes Md. House and Senate

ANNAPOLIS — A bill aimed at improving coordination between law enforcement and community groups when a child disappears has passed Maryland’s House and Senate.

The “Phylicia’s Law” bill was named in memory of North Carolina teen Phylicia Barnes, who disappeared in 2010 while visiting Baltimore and was later found dead. It passed both chambers last week.

The bill requires state officials to publish a list of missing children and annual statistics. They may also keep a list of groups of volunteers to help with searches and local law enforcement must try to work with them.

Several laws around the country are named for high-profile missing children, but the Black and Missing Foundation says this bill named for Barnes, who was black, could be the first named for a missing minority child.