Blue Springs Man: Silver Alert was “Misunderstanding”

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BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. -- A 68-year-old man says that a Silver Alert that was issued on Monday morning for him was all just a big misunderstanding.

Gerald "Butch" Smith of Blue Springs was reported missing on Monday morning by his daughter, who told police that her father suffers from dementia.

"Sure I've been under doctor's care and sure I take a lot of medication but then I'm fine, I function perfectly well," said Smith.

Police say that a missing persons report is the first step in getting a Silver Alert out to the public.

"A lot of times we ask people if there is any type of Alzheimers or dementia (involved)," said Sgt. Joe Fanara of the Blue Springs Police Department. Police say that in order for a Silver Alert to be issued, the missing person must be at least 60 years of age and believed to be suffering from dementia or other cognitive impairment. There must also be enough information to pass along to the public to help find a missing person.

"The main thing is we can get these people into the system and do broadcast with the local media, and hopefully locate these people and have a happy ending," said Sgt. Fanara.

Smith's daughter could not be reached for comment on what her father called the misunderstanding leading to today's Silver Alert.

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