With several of our customers currently attending the CADCA National Conference in Washington, D.C., we wanted to share this video from February of 2016 when the Walker County Sheriff’s Office launched tip411 with their District Attorney and Walker County Community in Action in a successful joint press conference.
tip411 interviewed Captain Dan Brogan of the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department in Onondaga County, New York.
Q: Tell us about Onondaga County and your department (how many residents, how many sworn, etc.).
A: Onondaga County is located in Central New York and includes the city of Syracuse. The county is 827 square miles, has a population of over 750,000 residents, and our department has just over 220 sworn members.
Q: How is tip411 administered in the Sheriff’s department (responsibilities, protocols, etc.)?
A: Our previous tip lines ran through the Public Information Office. When we set up tip411, we made the decision to have several administrators on the system who are responsible for being a clearinghouse for tips that are received. When they come in to myself, the Public Information Office, our Fusion Center, etc., we distribute the tips according to topic and assign them to individuals to respond and have tip conversations directly with the tipster.
Q: How is the tip411 system used in your community?
A: The majority of tips we receive, without question, are for drug activity. Most people want to report drug activity because no one wants a drug house next door to them, but they don’t have great success by calling 911 with this information because, usually, there’s very little patrol can do when they respond.
Because people can share this information electronically through tip411 and they know it’s anonymous, they have been providing more specific information than they leave on our tip line where they have to leave a voice message.
When email came out years ago we saw a huge uptick in the amount of tips that came in that way, but once people realized that we could trace their IP address to find out where the tip came from and that it was not truly anonymous, they became much more skeptical of contacting us that way.
With tip411, there’s not that traceability which is great for the tipster, yet we are able to create an ongoing anonymous conversation and ask questions to get that one more piece of information that makes a tip actionable and helps us affect arrest.
Q: What have you done to brand and promote the tip411 system in Onondaga County?
A: We’ve had success because we’ve done promotion of the system. We have the information on our website and almost every single night on the news there’s something from the Sheriff’s department about a crime and how we’re trying to identify a suspect and tip411 is available to share information safely and anonymously.
It’s also been helpful to us that the Syracuse Police Department and Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office are both using and promoting tip411 as well because it has added to a wider knowledge about the system with residents in our county.
Q: Any notable tips/arrests credited to tip411 that come to mind?
A: What’s notable is the every day success we’re having with the system that we hadn’t seen before. We’re getting more tips, closing more cases, and being able to continue anonymous tip conversations with reporting party rather than just getting a voicemail with a piece of information that isn’t enough to help us build a case off of.
We’ve had neighbors and community groups in meetings tell us they’re glad we’ve taken care of this problem or that drug location, and we wouldn’t have been able to do it with tip411.
Q: Have you noticed an increase in the number of tips your department is receiving and cases you are solving since implementing tip411?
A: We’ve absolutely seen an increase. Previously we got about one to two tips per week on our traditional phone tip line and through other avenues. We’re still seeing that, but in addition we’re now receiving about a tip per day through tip411.
Since launching our tip411 system in December of 2015, we’ve received approximately 225 tips. That’s 225 more tips than we would’ve gotten without tip411.
Of those 225 tips, we’ve opened 70 cases and closed nearly 80% of those through arrests.
I spent 14 years as Supervisor of the Narcotics Unit, and during that time we closed between 55% and 60% of cases based on tips that came in. The ones we didn’t make arrests on were because we couldn’t verify because there wasn’t enough information. With tip411, now we can go back and ask that one or two extra questions to make it more successful. For example, a tip about a blue car isn’t that helpful, but if we can follow up and get the tipster to share the license plate for the blue car, that really helps quite a bit and that’s why we’ve seen our arrest rate grow significantly with tip411.
Q: So, why tip411?
A: We got tip411 in December 2015 through a partnership with the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office and it’s been very successful for us. As I’ve said, it’s not just a substitute for other ways we have for people to submit tips, it’s an additional, anonymous avenue for people to reach us with important information that’s helping us get more information and close more cases.
Q: Anything you would tell other agencies considering tip411?
A: It’s a success. It’s had a proven track record of success with us for anonymous tips for narcotics because it allows you to communicate anonymously with the tipster and lets a lot more people come forward with more information.
People want to come forward, but they’re petrified. tip411 has helped remove that fear and has been a really a fantastic addition to our arsenal.
Marion County residents can now report crime tips via text message.
The new text-to-tip program, tip411, allows Marion County Sheriff’s Office to help connect with the community.
The program lets users report crime tips and suspicious activities by sending an anonymous text message from their cellphone or through a free app called MCSO In The Know.
“We believe an informed community is a safer community,” said Lt. Chris Baldridge, Marion County Sheriff’s public information officer.
MCSO In The Know gives officers the ability respond back by creating an anonymous two-way conversation.
The technology utilized in the app removes identifying information from users before messages reach police.
In addition to the two-way text conversations, the sheriff’s office will inform registered app users of public safety alerts by sending emails, text messages and app alerts.
Anonymous crime tips can also be shared by sending by texting “TipMCSO” and their message to 847411, or tip411.
Check out our most recent newsletter to learn how our custom tip411Mobile app is changing how police and communities connect. You’ll also see agency success stories and hear what law enforcement officials are saying about tip.
Atlantic City police tweeted Tuesday that a woman who allegedly stabbed her boyfriend in the hand during a domestic dispute last week was arrested.
According to police, an anonymous tip on the TIP 411 system led police to Amirah Black. Black, 19, was wanted for aggravated assault, unlawful possession of a weapon, and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.
Last Wednesday, police responded to Delancey Drive after Black told emergency dispatchers she had been assaulted by her boyfriend, Clifton Holley, and that he had several weapons.
It doesn’t matter if its late night, early morning or during business hours — violent crime is invading Minneapolis neighborhoods at an alarming rate.
“We need the community’s help to solve these serious crimes that are taking place,” said Minneapolis Police Cmdr. Scott Gerlicher.
Minneapolis police are reminding people how they can help, anonymously, by using their cellphone as a crime-fighting tool.
If you have information about a crime, you can either text 847411 or download MPD Tip on your smartphone to leave an anonymous tip for police.
“They all get triaged here, so we look at every single tip that comes in and we decide who would be best to handle the follow up on this,” Lt. Jeff Rugel said.
He says the system is set up so officers have no idea who is calling.
A convicted felon in possession of numerous weapons was arrested by La Habra Police Sunday, authorities said in a written statement.
Police were notified through Tip411, an app used by the La Habra Police Department which allows community members to submit anonymous tips, about a child residing in a home where there was weapons and drugs, officials said.
In response, police officers went to a residence in the 2600 block of Candlewood Way where they arrested Ronald Amster, 41, outside of his home for possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia, the statement said.
According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office website:
On April 6, 2016 at approximately 7:07 p.m., Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) deputies received information via tip411 in reference to a suspect selling narcotics at 7023 Himes Avenue North. The comments also stated the suspect was concealing the narcotics in a bleach bottle.
Deputies observed the suspect retrieve a small bleach bottle and remove a plastic bag containing marijuana. Deputies took the suspect into custody. Deputies also recovered the bleach bottle that had eleven bags of marijuana and two bags of cocaine. The suspect was charged with Possession of Controlled Substance (Cocaine), Possession of Cannabis Less than 20 grams, Possession of Controlled Substance (Cocaine) within 1000ft of a Business Transportation of Drug Paraphernalia, Possession of Control Substance (Cannabis) w/ intent to Sell, Possession of Control Substance (Cocaine) w/ intent to Sell and Tampering/Fabricating with Physical Evidence.
The investigation continues.
A new, more interactive way for folks in Tipton County to stay up-to-date on all safety issues occurring in the county is coming to town.
Drug Free Tipton is launching the tip411 alert system, which allows “the public to report crimes and other suspicious activities directly to law enforcement by sending anonymous text messages from their cell phone or via a free smartphone app,” a press release said.
A suburban drug task force is the latest Minnesota law enforcement agency to use texting and mobile apps to attract would-be tipsters.
Last week, the Southwest Metro Drug Task Force activated its “SWMTip” app, powered by St. Paul-based technology company tip411, for residents to submit anonymous tips and photos from their smartphones.
Phil Nawrocki, a Scott County Sheriff’s Office commander, said the first tip arrived within a day of launching the app. The task force joined more than 30 other Minnesota agencies using tip411 after noting how often it gathered information from mobile photos or text messages, Nawrocki said.
“Rather than have the individual go back home, sit down and try to find our e-mail address and contact info, they have a cellphone in their hand that can directly send confidential information to us,” Nawrocki said.
The Southwest Metro Drug Task Force covers Scott, Carver and McLeod counties as well as the cities of Excelsior, Greenwood, Shorewood and Tonka Bay.
Tip411’s apps keep tipsters anonymous by assigning them a six-character alias to be used when communicating with authorities, said tip411 President Terry Halsch. The company also has a “text-a-tip” system that is used by roughly 1,400 agencies around the country, he said.