Amongst the opening credits, for a brief moment the words "Amber Alert" are flashed on the screen. The Amber Alert system was formally inaugurated in the state of California, July 31, 2002. It drew both national and international recognition in its success in aiding authorities in their search for abducted children. In less than one year, the California Amber Alert system has been credited with aiding in the rescue of over a dozen children. The intial system was formulated in Texas in 1996, and is named after 9-year-old Amber Hagerman who was kidnapped and murdered. As of April 10, 2003 a bill creating a national Amber Alert system has passed in the House of Representitives, and unanimously approved in the Senate. "Without A Trace" (2002) aired its first episode shortly after a summer littered with nationally covered child kidnappings including the famous Elizabeth Smart abduction. The show aired Elizabeth's profile following its November 21, 2002 episode, In Extrimis. All Profiles are chosen by the FBI, not the show's producers.
Actual missing-person reports are posted at the end of each episode.
In loving memory of Nicole De Huff