It’s often the butt of many dark-humoured jokes that people are sort of self-aware about how “evil” and “selfish” humans can be.
However, there are always those optimists out there who can still walk around and proclaim that people are inherently good natured and kind-hearted. Unfortunately, Feb. 14, a day meant to represent love and compassion, will not be a day looked back on with fondness.
At approximately 11:30 p.m., Peel Regional Police sent out an Amber alert to alert nearby residents that 11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was abducted by her father Roopesh and currently on the run. While Amber alerts are usually meant to rally the community and any nearby locals in order to locate missing children, this one did the opposite.
Due to the late time the alert was sent, many were awakened from their sleep and called 911 to complain about being awakened in the middle of the night, instead of keeping the lines open for people who could potentially have information on Riya’s location. Between the time the alert was sent out and 9 a.m. the next morning, Peel Police received a total of 383 complaint calls about the alert.
However, it sadly doesn’t stop there, many more people went to social media to express their displeasure on receiving the alert at such a late time.
Sadly, this story does not have a happy ending. Riya Rajkumar was found dead in the basement of an apartment in Brampton, with her father now in custody and being charged with first-degree murder.
It’d be easy to turn this into an editorial about mental health, talk to someone and try to see the warning signs in everyone, but it’s hard to do that when there is such blatant disgust and selfishness in our communities.
So, if you’re one of the many people who voiced their anger over receiving this alert, wasting dispatcher’s time and line availability; open a new tab and google “Riya Rajkumar”, think about how terrified and confused that little girl must’ve felt during her final hours of life.
Reporter/Photographer for Chesterville Record and Eastern Ontario Agrinews. Currently working on Record segment, “Chilling Tales from Beyond”