What Is the Accuracy of Age Progression Photos?

When a child is kidnapped or goes missing for a long period of time, investigators often use age progression photos to give the public an idea of what the child might look like today. Investigators typically use photoshop or other image software to create what they believe the child looks like today. Often times these photos don’t resemble the victim once they are found, but there have been several instances that the photos have led to a rescue. Here are the age progression photos of missing children alongside their photos when they were eventually found. Let us know what you think.

Jaycee Dugard

jaycee dugard missing found age progression photo
Jaycee Dugard was 11 years old when she was kidnapped and held captive for nearly 18 years. Although there are some similarities between Dugard and her age progression photo, the photo didn’t lead to her rescue. Jaycee Dugard was finally rescued when her captor’s parole officer became suspicious of the two young women he spotted with.

Steve Carter

steve carter missing person barnes age progression found
His real name was Marx Panama Barnes when he was kidnapped by his mother at age 6 months. She eventually abandoned him and he was adopted by the Carter family. Steve was suspicious about his adoption and so he began searching online. It was when he came across a missing persons website and saw his age progression photo that he realized that Marx Panama Barnes was really him. The similarities are incredibly accurate especially when you consider a photo of an infant was used.

Aric Austin

aric austin age progression missing found
In 1981, Aric Austin was abducted by his father when he was just shy of 2 months old. An age progression photo actually led to him being found 22 years later. It was when a U.S. Department of Education investigator working on a case involving fraudulent birth certificates recognized Austin’s driver’s license photo from an age-progression image. Another great example of an accurate age progression photo being generated from a baby picture.

Connie McCallister

connie mccallister found missing age progression
When she was 16, Connie McCallister was allegedly drugged by her 22 year old boyfriend and taken to Mexico. She spent the next nine years trapped in Mexico, abused by her boyfriend. She eventually married another man and had three daughters with him. It was a meeting with an American missionary that led to Connie making her way back home. Her age progression photo has many similarities to her found photo, minus the glasses and change in hair.

Joseph Carson

joseph carson missing age progression found
Joseph Carson was abducted by his father as a toddler in 2001. He was missing for about five years when a customer at an auto parts store saw that a PSA showing Joseph’s age progression image was strikingly similar to a kid who just happened to be in the store at that exact time. This was a moment when age progression photos work miracles.

Shawn Hornbeck

shawn hornbeck missing found age progression today
Shawn Hornbeck was eleven years old, when he was kidnapped in 2001. He was held for over four years by his kidnapper before being rescued on January 12, 2007. It was when his captor kidnapped another boy that police finally arrested him and found Shawn living in his apartment. Unfortunately, the age progression photo in this case looks nothing like Shawn Hornbeck when he was found.

Sara Eghbal-Brin

sara Eghbal-brin missing found france age progression
Sara was taken from her mother at knife point at the age of three. Her father kidnapped her and left their native France for Canada, where Sara was rescued three years later. Her age progression photo helped play a role in her rescue when her father was pulled over by police when Sara was not wearing a seatbelt.

Elaine Yates

Elaine yates age progression missing found
In 1985, Elaine Yates disappeared from Rhode Island with her two young daughters, Kimberly and Kelly. It was a case of parental child abduction. For 31 years, the girls’ father, Russell Yates, looked for his daughters. It wasn’t until a tipster came forward and led the police to the Houston area where the girls, now in their 30s with families of their own, and Elaine were living under new names. Yates was charged with felony child snatching, but the charges were later dropped.

Carlina White

carlina white age progression missing found
On August 4, 1987, nineteen day old Carlina White was abducted from the hospital while receiving care for a high fever. A woman named Annugetta Pettway dressed as a nurse and kidnapped Carlina. She posed as Carlina’s mother until 2005 when she finally broke down and confessed she wasn’t her real mother after being unable to produce a birth certificate. Carlina, who was raised as Nejdra “Netty” Nance, searched online missing persons records and discovered a baby photo that resembled Carlina’s own infant daughter. It was then that she discovered her birth parents and was reunited with them after 23 years.


Amanda Berry

amanda berry agre progression found
On April 21, 2003, Amanda Berry was kidnapped by Ariel Castro the day before her 17th birthday. Initially police believed she was a runaway until an unidentified male used her cellphone and assured police that Amanda would be home in the next few days. Amanda was held captive for 10 years before she saw a chance for escape and screamed for help to neighbors. She gave birth to one of Castro’s children while held in captivity.


Gina DeJesus

gina dejesus age progression missing found
Like Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus was also a victim of Ariel Castro. She was kidnapped on April 2, 2004 when she was only 14 years old. All of Castro’s victims were kidnapped after accepting a ride from Castro. She was held captive until 2013 when Amanda Berry escaped and phoned 911.

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