Early-morning Amber Alert on phones startles New York - New York News

Early-morning Amber Alert on phones startles New York

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Wendy Rodriquez was on her way to work in Harlem at 3:51 a.m. Wednesday when suddenly her phone made a very loud noise.

She got the Amber Alert that 7-month-old Mario Danner Jr. had been allegedly kidnapped by his apparently bipolar mother Marina Lopez after their supervised visit at an ACS building on 125th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard. Wendy was one block away.

Danner, Jr. was found safely. Police got a tip a tip after the Amber Alert.

It is believed that millions of New Yorkers received the Amber Alert on their mobile phones after the NYPD asked State Police to initiate a Wireless Emergency Alert through FEMA, to the FCC, and the cell phone companies.

The phone companies voluntarily issue the alerts through cell phone towers. Phones purchased in the last year are automatically set to receive four kinds of alerts: Presidential, Extreme, Severe and Amber. You can opt out of three of them but many people don't know how.  The phones will not allow you to opt out of the Presidential alerts.

The Fox 5 Facebook page was flooded with angry comments from people upset about being awoken with the alert.  Several wanted to know why it was sent six hours after the Amber Alert was issued.  Others wanted to know why it was sent when most people were sleeping and would not be in a position to do anything about the situation.

Robert Hoever of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children admits there are concerns about the use of the system.

"We don't want to over-saturate the public.  We don't want to desensitize the public," Hoever says.  "That's why there is restrictive criteria."

Older phones often cannot receive the free geographically specific alerts.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Garner's family meets U.S. attorney

    Staten Island stores worried about rally

    Staten Island stores worried about rally

    Thursday, August 21 2014 11:01 PM EDT2014-08-22 03:01:16 GMT
    The Rev. Al Sharpton and family members of Eric Garner came from a meeting with U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch in which they asked for a federal civil rights investigation into his apparent chokehold death. Meantime, Staten Island businesses are bracing for the huge crowds expected at Saturday's march. Sharpton said he is estimating about 3,000 to 5,000 people to rally Saturday.
    The Rev. Al Sharpton and family members of Eric Garner came from a meeting with U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch in which they asked for a federal civil rights investigation into his apparent chokehold death. Meantime, Staten Island businesses are bracing for the huge crowds expected at Saturday's march. Sharpton said he is estimating about 3,000 to 5,000 people to rally Saturday.
  • Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team auditions

    Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team auditions

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:26 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:26:39 GMT
    Out of over 500 hopefuls only a handful will join the Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team. The Nets held auditions this week at LIU Brooklyn. Adorable Bronx native Arielle was turned away last year but this time around she's made it through to the final round of the auditions. But even those who were on the team last year still have to try out.
    Out of over 500 hopefuls only a handful will join the Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team. The Nets held auditions this week at LIU Brooklyn. Adorable Bronx native Arielle was turned away last year but this time around she's made it through to the final round of the auditions. But even those who were on the team last year still have to try out.
  • Chris Rock gets foul ball at Yankees game

    Chris Rock gets foul ball at Yankees game

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:03 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:03:11 GMT
    Chris Rock almost made the play of the day at Yankee Stadium. Instead, the comedian wound up with a nice prize -- a foul ball that nearly landed in his lap during Thursday's game between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees.
    Chris Rock almost made the play of the day at Yankee Stadium. Instead, the comedian wound up with a nice prize -- a foul ball that nearly landed in his lap during Thursday's game between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices