At just after 11:30 on Thursday night, Peel Regional Police issued an Ambert Alert about 11-year-old Riya Rajkumar, a Brampton girl who was kidnapped by her father and made threats "indicating he was going to harm himself and his daughter”. Police issued three Amber Alerts - a repeat of the first alert at 11:42 PM, followed by an alert at 12:21 AM saying that the Amber Alert had been cancelled and the child was located.
Shortly after the Amber Alert was cancelled, it was revealed that 11-year-old Rajkumar was found dead inside the basement of a home in Brampton, at Queen Street and Highway 410. Father Roopesh Rajkumar was taken down by police in Oro-Medonte - charges against him remain pending.
Peel Police allege that the only reason that they successfully located him was "as a direct result of someone receiving the alert." "The system works. Thank you to all those that called with tips," they wrote on Twitter this morning.
However, the series of Amber Alerts was also met with an influx of complaints, specifically about the late hour that they were issued. Those who had their phone ringers turned on at the time also received a blaring alarm along with the screen notification.
Not only did the Peel Police call centre flood with complaints from disgruntled Ontarians, but many of them also flocked to social media and Reddit to voice their complaints about having their sleep disturbed.
Our communications bureau is receiving numerous calls to 9-1-1, complaining about the late hour of the Amber Alert. As a direct result of someone receiving the alert, we were able to locate the suspect & his vehicle. The system works. Thank you to all those that called with tips.— Peel Regional Police (@PeelPoliceMedia) February 15, 2019
"I didn’t kill the girl. But I also don’t care enough about it that I want to be woken up," one Redditor wrote Friday morning. "I should be able to choose to not be bothered. I don’t care about random child events, I’m inside my apartment all night anyway f*ck off".
One Redditor even went as far as posting a step-by-step tutorial on how to turn the Amber Alerts off, "permanently or on a schedule". Which, after trying myself and reading the comments section of the thread, doesn't work.
However, it's clear that for every complaint that's been posted online, there are about a dozen counter-complaints about the kinds of people who would have the audacity to be annoyed by an alert about a missing child.
I'm not even sure what to say here. How can anyone complain about the notifications? What if it was their child or loved one missing? Such horrible people to complain about this. I got the message, I was in bed, but who cares there was a missing child out there— AP (@SnoopAVP) February 15, 2019
How disgusting and immoral to complain about an amber alert! There should be fines for those who immaturely called 9-1-1 to complain and abused the system! RIP to the innocent girl and may her family find the strength to get through her devastating loss.— Marlene Silva-Fel (@Da_Leenz) February 15, 2019
Please do a PSA telling the public how incredibly selfish it is to call 911 to complain about an amber alert the 911 system tied up with that garbage. Shame them without calling them out. I cannot believe I even have to write this.— Just tired of this crap⭐☀️ (@skipz3r) February 15, 2019
"The lack of empathy in some of these comments is quite disgusting," one Twitter user wrote to Peel Police. "This poor little girl was killed by her own father on her birthday and yet people are complaining about their 5 mins of sleep. My heart breaks everytime I think about how scared she must have been. Rest in peace."