Help Fight Crime

LISTEN: Johnstown Police Chief Talks New Tip Line – tip411

Johnstown Police Chief Robert Johnson talks to his local radio station about tip411.

tip411 is a new program, a text system to report drug and suspicious activity in your area.

Chief Johnson talks how to get the app and how to text a tip.

The program has already been a success; people are already using it to help their community.

Check out their interview with Johnstown Police Chief Robert Johnson at ForeverJohnstown.com

Crime Solvers Tip411

Fairfax County Crime Solvers Partners with tip411

Fairfax County Crime Solvers has partnered with tip411 to introduce a new and innovative crime-fighting tool.

Through a partnership with tip411, information can now be shared anonymously with police via a free smartphone app, text message, or a web tip form.

Fairfax County Crime Solvers encourages anyone with a smartphone to download their free Fairfax Co Crime Solvers app for iPhone/Android or to text anonymous tips to 847411 using keyword FCCS.

Residents should submit tips about crimes, drugs, bullying, threats, suspicious activity, and more to help police protect students and community members of all ages.

Issues requiring immediate public safety attention should always be reported directly police by calling 9-1-1.

More information about Fairfax County Crime Solvers can be found at www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org

“We quantify our success with tip411 based solely on the fact that even one case solved because of a tip received via tip411 is a benefit since that case would not have been solved without it.”

tip411 interviewed Public Information Officer Alexandra Ovington of the Arlington Heights, Illinois Police Department.

Q: How has the tip411 system aided your agency?
A:
tip411 has aided our agency by allowing citizens’ voices to be heard anonymously. As police officers, we routinely hear from citizens that they are afraid to call 911. Many citizens believe they can be charged with filing a false police report if what they reported was incorrect or inaccurate. While this line of thinking is a misconception, it still creates an issue of suspicious or criminal activity being underreported in our community. tip411 creates a platform for these citizens to report incidents to police without the fear of misreporting. This allows our agency to be aware of crime or suspicious activity that would otherwise not be reported.

Q: Any notable tips/arrests credited to tip411 that come to mind?
A:
Our last arrest credited to tip411 is a case involving a stolen vehicle. In that case, a food delivery driver responded to a local hotel for a delivery, and while the driver was inside the hotel making the delivery, a female suspect stole his vehicle, which was left running in the parking lot. A tip was received via tip411 identifying the female offender, and that identification led to an arrest. The male that provided the tip received a cash reward courtesy of Arlington Heights Crime Stoppers.

Q: Tell us about your community and your agency (how many residents, how many sworn, etc.).
A:
The Village of Arlington Heights is located in Cook County, Illinois. The Village is approximately 25 miles northwest of downtown Chicago. The population of Arlington Heights is estimated at 75,249. Arlington Heights Police Department has 107 Sworn Police Officers. Arlington Heights is best known for the Arlington Park Race Track, home of the Arlington Million; a Breeders Cup qualifying event.

Q: How did you hear about tip411?
A:
We heard about tip411 via the internet. We officially signed up in 2008 and have been using it ever since.

Q: How is tip411 administered in your department (responsibilities, protocols, etc.)?
A:
 As the Public Information Officer (PIO), I am authorized to post on all social media platforms. Myself and my partner, the Problem Oriented Policing Coordinator (POP), facilitate the majority of posts through tip411. The PIO and POP post media releases, crime alerts, crime maps, event alerts, citizen/community alerts, and updates. In the event of a critical incident or media release for immediate distribution when neither the PIO or POP are available, supervisors are authorized to post on social media platforms through tip411. Any tips that are received are responded to by the PIO and POP and are subsequently assigned to the appropriate bureau.

Q: What have you done to brand and promote the tip411 system in your community to make your residents aware of it?
A:
It is a benefit for the Police Department to reach as many citizens as possible via tip411, as the more eyes and ears we have in the community, the safer our community becomes. In addition to cross-posting all posts made through tip411 to Facebook and Twitter, we also provide citizens with how-to instructions for signing up for and using tip411. We offer these instructions in handouts that we distribute at all community events including Police Department Open Houses and safety presentations. We also utilize tip411 in partnership with Arlington Heights Crime Stoppers whom, through their contributions, offer up to $1,000 for tips that successfully lead to arrests.

Q: Have you noticed an increase in the number of tips your agency is receiving and cases you are solving since implementing tip411?
A:
While the frequency of tips we receive vary from month to month, we do not quantify our success with tip411 based on an increase in the cases we are solving because of tips we receive. We quantify our success with tip411 based solely on the fact that even one case solved because of a tip received via tip411 is a benefit since that case would not have been solved without it.

Q: Any advice for other agencies considering tip411?
A:
Do not be afraid to provide case information to your community via tip411. Any information you can disseminate to the public for specific cases will only help to increase the amount of tips you receive in return. A strong Social Media presence leads to a strong Social Media following. Increase your eyes and ears and you will be surprised at your community’s willingness to help the police solve cases.

Benton Harbor bringing in tip411 app

Benton Harbor residents will soon be able to report suspicious activity through tip411, a smartphone app that allows people to report activities anonymously.

Public Safety Director Dan McGinnis said he wants to help citizens feel safe communicating with law enforcement.

“The company that does this will not reveal the person’s name,” he said. 

He said they have talked to people who know who shot them, but won’t tell the police. 

“We had a person who had been murdered, who was done in front of people who actually took him to the hospital and none of them wanted step up and speak,” he said.

McGinnis said it’s a chance to let people communicate on their own terms.

“We just need the information,” he said. “We don’t care where it come from in most cases. But if we don’t get it, it makes it hard for us to protect your neighborhoods.”

In addition, he said the app will allow the department to send out alerts if needed.

After the meeting, Deputy Director Mike Clark said residents will be notified, when the app is ready, about how to download and use it through the city’s website and a news release. He didn’t know how long it will take to launch the app. 

During the meeting, McGinnis said one of the things residents sometimes want to report anonymously is illegal dumping.

McGinnis declared war on illegal dumping about two weeks ago. Anyone who sees someone suspected of illegal dumping can call the new dumping hotline at 944-7929.

“It’s absolutely appalling,” he said.

He said a state Department of Environmental Quality investigator last week found five automobile repair shops that didn’t have the proper paperwork, showing that they legally disposed of scrap tires.

“They are on notice,” he said. “… The tire situation is absolutely horrendous. We have hundreds and hundreds of tires in ravines.”

McGinnis said they have made 13 arrests concerning illegal dumping since the last City Commission meeting. 

Read the full story from The Herald-Palladium

Help fight crime in Bismarck

New program yielding tips for Bismarck Police Department

The Bismarck Police Department’s new anonymous tip program has yielded more than 100 tips since its launch on Jan. 1.

Officer Katie Horn said the tip411 app allows users to provide tips quickly but remain anonymous if they wish. Within a couple days of its launch, information received through the program helped officers locate a runaway. Tipsters also have provided information about shoplifters, and about 30 tips have been received on an active felony fraud case dating back to 2018.

The tip411 program replaces Crime Stoppers, which the department stopped using when tip411 was launched.

Tipsters can use tip411 three ways. They can text information directly to tip411, submit information to tip411 through the BPD website or use the app to send a message. Photos and videos can be attached to those messages. The message and text methods are quicker and easier, Horn said. Text messages can be sent to 847411. The keyword is BISPD.

Read the full story from The Bismarck Tribune