NamUs is managed by the
UNT Health Science Center
and funded, with additional oversight, by the
National Institute of Justice
through cooperative agreement number 2011-MU-BX-K063.

For more information about NamUs, visit www.NamUs.gov.

NamUs Logo

The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs)

Overview of NamUs:

On any given day in the United States, there are between 80,000 and 90,000 individuals actively reported missing to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC). It is estimated that there are also between 13,000 and 40,000 unidentified decedents recovered throughout the United States, with an additional 1,000 unidentified decedents being added to this number each year. The missing and unidentified person problem in the United States has been deemed our nation's silent mass disaster.

The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) is a powerful, free tool to assist law enforcement officers, medical examiners, coroners, allied criminal justice professionals, and the family members of missing persons in resolving these cold cases. NamUs combines online database technology with forensic and analytical resources to solve long-term missing and unidentified person cases. NamUs resources also include a team of expert Regional System Administrators (RSAs) who assist users with case management and biometric support services. The online databases contain detailed case information that allows for searching using a wide variety of identifiers, such as physical features, dental records and tattoos, while protecting sensitive case data which is restricted and only viewable by medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement, clearinghouse personnel, and other allied forensic specialists.

Click "play" below to view a six-minute informational video about NamUs:

NamUs Regional System Administrators:

NamUs Regional System Administrators (RSAs) are responsible for validating all criminal justice users for access to law enforcement sensitive information in NamUs, securing forensic and analytical resources and providing assistance with case validation and case management in their respective geographic territories. RSA territories and contact information can be found in the NamUs Regional Administrator Map.

Forensic Odontology:

NamUs provides free resources related to forensic odontology. NamUs Forensic Odontologists assist with the acquisition and upload of dental information to NamUs, charting of dental records and performing dental comparisons between missing and unidentified persons. The NamUs Odontologist territories and contact information can be found in the NamUs Forensic Odontology Regional Map.

Fingerprint Services:

NamUs provides free resources related to fingerprint analysis. The NamUs Fingerprint Specialist provides nationwide assistance in locating, coding and uploading fingerprint information to NamUs, as well as performing fingerprint comparisons between missing and unidentified person cases. The NamUs Fingerprint Specialist, William "Bill" Bailey, can be reached at 817-735-5117 or by email at William.Bailey@unthsc.edu.

DNA Assistance:

As part of the NamUs system, the Center for Human Identification at the UNT Health Science Center coordinates with criminal justice agencies, the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory, and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children to identify, collect and perform DNA analyses on unidentified remains and family reference samples free of charge. For DNA submission paperwork and instructions, visit the DNA Submission Page.

Forensic Anthropology:

As part of the NamUs system, the UNT Center for Human Identification's Department of Forensic Anthropology assists agencies with recoveries of skeletal remains, skeletal examinations and positive identifications of decedents free of charge. Visit the Laboratory of Forensic Anthropology web page for more information.

Training and Analysis:

The NamUs Training and Analysis Division provides analytical support and training to NamUs stakeholders throughout the United States. Analytical resources include NCIC offline searches, NamUs database searches for potential matches between missing and unidentified persons, and searches of both public and law enforcement sensitive databases for information to assist in the location of persons reported missing, family members for DNA collections, and next of kin. NamUs also partners with the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP) to coordinate ViCAP resources and share case information.

NamUs works with law enforcement agencies across the country and can assist with outreach or provide any needed technical assistance. NamUs also provides free training related to the NamUs databases and other resources. For additional information on hosting a NamUs training event at your agency, please contact your RSA or the NamUs Director of Training and Analysis, B.J. Spamer, at BJ.Spamer@unthsc.edu.

Free online training modules related to missing and unidentified persons are also available from the UNT Center for Human Identification. Visit the Online Training page for more information.

Communications and Outreach:

The NamUs Communications and Outreach Division is responsible for responding to media inquiries, outreach to media, coordinating social networking, and collaboration with victim advocates groups throughout the country. The Communication and Outreach Division assists law enforcement, medical examiner and coroners in additional dissemination of case information for the purpose of soliciting tips and leads.

The NamUs Director of Communications, Todd Matthews, can be reached at 817-408-6723 or by email at J.Todd.Matthews@unthsc.edu for information related to media or missing/unidentified person outreach events. Additional media resources can also be found at the following NamUs page.

Publications:

Click the links below to download additional information related to NamUs and its forensic resources:

Family Guide to DNA
NamUs Fact Sheet
NamUs One-Page Flyer
NamUs Regional Administrator Map
NamUs Forensic Odontology Regional Map
NamUs Tri-Fold Brochure
UNT Center for Human Identification Tri-Fold Brochure