U.S. Marshals rescued 27 missing children during a 5-day operation in Virginia that ended Friday.
The mission, called "Operation Find Our Children," also confirmed that six additional children who were reported missing were with a legal guardian.
The marshals joined with personnel from local law enforcement agencies, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and the Virginia Department of Social Services to complete the mission. Medical professionals also were part of the operation.
"The Department of Justice is dedicated to protecting the most vulnerable children in our society and ‘Operation Find Our Children' does just that," Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen said in a statement.
Since 2005, U.S. Marshals have helped to recover more than 2,000 children. The marshals are able to rescue children in 75% of missing children cases assigned to them. In addition to the 27 rescued Virginia children, the officers have rescued more than 440 missing children in 2020 alone.
"We want the missing children across this great nation to know the U.S. Marshals Service will never stop looking for you," said Nick Proffitt, U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District of Virginia. "We will find you."