A man holds a poster of Destiny Lloyd Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, during a missing and murdered Indigenous women and people vigil on West First Avenue in Toppenish, Wash.

Washington State Patrol has released its list of active cases of missing Indigenous people, which includes 30 women and men within the Yakama Nation and in Yakima County.

There are 98 names on the list that State Patrol published Wednesday in a post on its official blog, InsideOut. State Patrol included a link to the list as part of a tribal liaison update. This is the first time the state agency has published such a list of names of Native people who are the subject of active missing persons cases.

The oldest active case in Yakima County on State Patrol’s list is that of Janice Marie Hannigan, a White Swan High School student who disappeared in late December 1971 after being released from the hospital.

Patti Gosch, a tribal liaison for State Patrol along with Dawn Pullin, a Spokane Tribe of Indians citizen and the tribal liaison for Eastern Washington, said in a March 3 email that the agency would soon begin publishing the names.

“We will be publishing the names in the near future in our blogspot and we are also in the process of improving our website to include a monthly list of missing Native American persons as part of our MMIP program,” she wrote.

The list is current as of March 1 and includes the person’s age today, the date she or he went missing, the reporting agency, case number and phone number for the reporting agency.

Yakima County has the biggest total of any county. Only King County is close, with 19. Of the Yakima County cases, 27 are with Yakama Nation police; one with the Yakima County Sheriff’s Office, one with the Yakima Police Department and one with the Toppenish Police Department.

The blog notes that the Native population represented 1.9% of the state’s population according to the 2019 population estimates by the U.S. Census, but accounts for 6% of Washington’s active missing persons reports.

“The actual number of missing Native Americans is likely much higher, as Native persons are often inaccurately reported or listed as White in law enforcement databases,” the blog says.

Both liaisons have been working with law enforcement agencies across the United States and into Canada, according to the blog.

“While challenges can arise, the WSP and our Tribal Liaisons are dedicated to building strong relationships, finding answers, and finding our missing Indigenous women, girls, two-spirited, men and boys in our community,” it said.

Reach Tammy Ayer at tayer@yakimaherald.com or on Facebook.

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