CLEVELAND, Ohio (WTVO) — The disappearance of nearly 30 children in Cleveland has a local police chief saying he hasn’t seen anything like it in his 33-year career.

Newburg Heights Police Chief John Majoy, who also serves as the board president of Cleveland Missing, said as many as 27 children have been reported missing in the greater Cleveland area.

Majoy told Fox News Digital that the number of missing 12- to 17- year olds was unprecedented.

“There’s always peaks and valleys with missing persons, but this year it seems like an extraordinary year,” he said. “For some reason, in 2023, we’ve seen a lot more than we normally see, which is troubling in part because we don’t know what’s going on with some of these kids, whether they’re being trafficked or whether they’re involved in gang activity or drugs.”

Majoy said the majority of cases were likely runaways and not abductions, which would qualify them for an Amber Alert.

He also said desperate teenagers join gangs for protection, which lead to initiation crimes, becoming prostitutes, or becoming drug addicts.