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Highway Patrol analyst makes sure missing aren't forgotten

Highway Patrol analyst makes sure missing aren't forgotten

July 16th, 2017 by Michelle Brooks in Local News

Clara Land, a criminal intelligence analyst for the Missing Persons Unit in the Missouri State Highway Patrol, poses outside the state headquarters building in Jefferson City.

Photo by Julie Smith /Fulton Sun.

Clara Land takes her compassion, drive, understanding and outside-the-box thinking to work every day.

Land has worked for the Missouri State Highway Patrol for 11 years. She started part time with the Division of Drug and Crime Control while a earning an elementary education degree at Lincoln University.

"I enjoyed what I was working and loved being a part of the (patrol) family so I decided to stay," Land said.

For the last two years, she has been a criminal intelligence analyst for the division's Missing Person Unit, and she is the state's Missing Person Clearinghouse manager.

"I act as a liaison between law enforcement and families who have missing loved ones," Land said. "Every day, my job is interesting along with being very rewarding."

Her job includes creating informational flyers for family, law enforcement and web distribution.

She also assists law enforcement with current and cold cases involving missing or unidentified people.

"I enjoy being able to assist in bringing closure to individuals who have been missing a family member or friend for one day to 50-plus years," Land said.

Although she enjoys interacting with the affected family and friends, she acknowledged it can be difficult.

"I can't imagine what they have gone through, wondering if their family member is OK," Land said. "I take the compassion I have for these family members and turn it into even more of a drive to help locate these individuals."