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Runaway in Colorado. 15 with questions.

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  • Runaway in Colorado. 15 with questions.

    Hi I'm running away very soon but needed some answers. I'm 15 going to runaway from Colorado to ohio. If we get caught. What happens to the person I'm staying with. What can we do to NOT get caught. And if we get caught and I'm asked if I feel safe returning home. What happens if I say no.

  • #2
    RE: Runaway in Colorado. 15 with questions.

    Thanks for reaching out to us for help. We are sorry to hear that you do not feel safe at home, and it sounds like you are in a tough situation and you have decided to run away. Since you are under the age of 18, if you run away your parent or legal guardian can call the police, who might force you to return home. Running away is not a crime, however anyone who allows you to stay with them could risk criminal charges for harboring a runaway, so this person you are running to in Ohio could risk serious legal consequences.
    We are not legal experts. Laws are different from state to state, county to county, city to city. How a local police department responds to the situation can vary drastically. A good way to find out the laws in your area is to call your local police and ask what their policies are.
    We are here to listen and help however we can. We aren’t here to tell you what to do. If you decide to leave, lots of different things could affect whether or not you get caught and sent home. This all depends on your needs and your situation. For example, if you have to do illegal things to survive or you end up living on the streets, it could be difficult for you to avoid being caught, and we often hear from runaways who end up in unsafe and scary situations. If you want to talk through your plan, please give us a call. We are here to support you however we can. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.
    Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

    National Runaway Safeline
    [email protected] (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!


    • #3
      I'm 15 I live in Colorado and I'm going too run away too my friends house who also lives in Colorado I can no longer be at home. Could I get in trouble in any way or my friend?


      • ccsmod1
        ccsmod1 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hey there,

        Thanks so much for contacting us, it takes a lot of courage to reach out and share your story. Running away is a big decision and it can be very stressful to figure out what you want to do. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parents (or guardians) can file a runaway report, which is essentially a missing person report. Running away is a status offense; this means that it isn’t illegal, but it’s something you can’t do while still a minor. If a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned to your parents/guardians. As far as your friend is concerned, whoever the adult in the household is could be charged with harboring a runaway, which is a misdemeanor. Penalties for harboring a runaway vary from state to state, police officer to officer, and how your parents/guardians view the situation.

        If you’d like to go over what’s going on in depth, or if you’d like to explore other options that you may have available to you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. You can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support you in any way we can.

        Stay safe,

    • #4
      Hi i’m planning on running away soon, so I was wondering how long do you have to be a runaway to be considered a dependent child?


      • ccsmod15
        ccsmod15 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hey there,
        Thanks for reaching out to NRS, it seems like you are going through a lot and feeling like leaving home. If we understand the question correctly you won’t become a dependent for someone else who isn’t your parent or guardian no matter how long you are living with them.
        Unless guardianship gets transferred to those you are staying with or you get permission from a parent/guardian then you are considered a runaway. If your parents decided to file a runaway report then the police will also try to bring you back home if they find you. Those you are staying with could potentially be charged with harboring a runaway as well.
        Hopefully this answered your questions, if you have more don’t hesitate to reach out to our 24/7 hotline at 1-800-RUNAWAY.
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