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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City, Missouri police are addressing the community’s concerns on missing Black women.

A few weeks ago, police said stories that a serial killer was targeting Black women were false, but weeks later a Black woman was the victim of a man charged with holding her captive and abusing her in his Excelsior Springs home.

The woman told detectives she had been taken off Prospect Avenue, which only refueled people’s concerns.

Interim KCPD Chief Joseph Mabin said the department has been working with Excelsior Springs police.

Excelsior police said there is no current missing person’s report that would correspond with any evidence in their investigation.

Mabin also said he’s working with the missing persons and homicide units in KCPD and those departments said there’s no missing person reports.

“We hear you loud and clear,” Mabin said. “We feel your anger. We understand why you would be upset; however, these rumors are not true.”

Councilwoman Ryana Parks-Shaw said her phone has been buzzing since the woman escaped from the home in early October.

Parks-Shaw was at the Board of Police Commissioners meeting Tuesday to talk to the board about new rules.

“Listen to the community and look at the policies so we can really see improvement in this,” Parks-Shaw said. “I wanted to make sure the commission is prioritizing that and doing something about it.”

Parks-Shaw said even though there aren’t any reports, more can be done to protect Black women in KCMO.

“Unfortunately history shows that Black women and girls are generally held to somewhat of a different standard that many times they go unreported or under-reported when they’re missing,” Parks-Shaw said.

She said the department can start with defining what a missing person is.

“If a person has disappeared or if a person is missing, whether you think they run away or not, we should start looking,” Parks-Shaw said.

Parks-Shaw also said city council can’t make any new policies because the police department is governed by the Board of Police Commissioners.

Mabin said in response, he ordered extra patrol along the Prospect corridor.

“We’re not doing this because of social media rumors, we’re doing this because we hear you and the community members of our community deserved to be heard and have their fears addressed,” Mabin said.

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