Safe Return Program
The Safe Return was implemented by the Sugar Land Police Department in order to assist us during encounters with members of the community having special needs. This includes persons who are non-verbal or affected by: Autism, Alzheimer's, Dementia, or some other mental/intellectual disability. The program evolved from discussions between Sugar Land Police Officers and local parents. When seconds count in an emergency situation, the Safe Return Program registry allows first responders to have access to critical information designed to help safely reunite families of registered participants.
How does the Safe Return Program work?
Participation in the Safe Return Program is completely voluntary and free. An application must be submitted to the Sugar Land Police Department annually. Eligibility includes:
- Participant or guardian is a resident of Sugar Land
- Participant attends school within the Sugar Land Police Department jurisdiction
- Participant may be unable to communicate basic personal information due to a diagnosed medical disorder.
- Participant is prone to wander away or runaway from guardians, residence or school due to a diagnosed medical disorder.
- Guardians voluntarily submit a completed application and photo with all required medical information.
Download and print the form (complete the entire form, if an area is not applicable please indicate N/A). Return to:
Sugar Land Police Department - Records Division
1200 State Hwy
Sugar Land, Texas 77478
If you have any questions, contact Peggy Heinemeyer at (281) 275-2326
How will the information be stored?
The application information and a current photo will be stored in our secure record database. Juvenile and health information will not be released to the public and is utilized solely for the purpose of providing better service for the registrant and the families involved during times of crisis.
Do I need to update the registration?
Yes, each year you will be required to update your registration. A recent photo should be provided annually to help identify your child or dependent adult. In addition, the registry should be updated due to a change in address, phone number, emergency contact or the purchase of a new vehicle, to name a few.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will this registry help if my child/dependent adult goes missing?
If the individual goes missing and is reported by the parent or guardian, information about physical appearance, the most likely places where he or she would go to, as well as triggers, stimulants, and de-escalation techniques will be available to every police officer in the area who is looking for the missing person. If the individual has not been reported and is incapable of effectively communicating his/her name to an officer, officers may use the individual's physical descriptors to search applicable registry photos, allowing officers to make a more timely identification.
If I don't live in Sugar Land, can I still register my child/dependent adult?
An individual may also be registered if at least one parent or guardian lives in Sugar Land or if the individual attends any school, day care, or assisted living in Sugar Land.
Will I be notified about annual renewals?
Although our agency will promote this program throughout the year, the renewals are the sole responsibility of the parent/guardian. It is recommended that you renew the registration during the month of the registrant’s birthday.
What guarantees do we have that the interaction between our child/dependent adult and the police will be positive once he/she is registered?
There is no guarantee with this registry of positive outcome. What the registry allows is the ability for patrol officers to access necessary information faster to begin searching. Also, if an officer comes across a "wandering" child or adult who is unable to communicate, the officer can have the database queried for persons on the registry living in the area. What is important to stress is that simply having a person registered with the registry is not going to change police responses in every instance involving an individual with a mental or intellectual disability. Police will act according to procedure and depending on circumstances.