Put simply, it is a three part approach to solving the crime problem. Crime Stoppers relies on cooperation between the police, the media, and the general community to provide a flow of information about crime and criminals.
Citizens are responsible for forming a Crime Stoppers non-profit corporation. The directors establish policy, determine amount and method of reward payments as well as work closely with law enforcement and the media. The directors are also responsible for fundraising and all volunteer service.
Crime Stoppers is publicized on a regular basis through various outlets including print, broadcast, web, and social media. Through a partnership with local law enforcement, Crime Stoppers is able to alert citizens on crime trends and inform the public on topics of interest regarding personal and public safety.
Local law enforcement agencies receive and process the anonymous tips received through Crime Stoppers to investigate and solve the crimes. If the information leads to an arrest, the tipster will be paid for their information.
Persons having information on a crime can anonymously call the Crime Stoppers tips line at 1-877-403-8477 (TIPS). When tipsters call they will talk to a third party answering service which will assign a random tip number which may be used to collect a reward if the information leads to an arrest.
All calls remain anonymous.
Tipsters now have the option of giving us tips online. The process is completely secure and anonymous and is a very effective and efficient means of safely communicating with us in today’s world. Our web tip process is powered by the world’s leading online tip solution provider, P3 Tips.
The very unique integrated Two-Way Dialog capabilities allow the tipster to come back and provide additional information to their tip at any time, but also provides a secure means for the coordinator to ask questions or provide reward information back to the tipster through the same secure and encrypted interface.
STRUCTURE & FUNDING
Crime Stopper Programs are organized as a not for profit organization (Charity). A civilian community board of directors provides direction as to the financial and promotional activities of the program. The board of directors enhances the community involvement aspect, and its function is vital to the programs success.
The Crime Stoppers program is funded by private donations and fund raising. NO TAX DOLLARS are involved. The reward money paid out by the program is from the fund raising and donations from concerned citizens and businesses.
A community board of directors, made up of persons from throughout the area, meets on a monthly basis to evaluate arrests and to decide on the size of rewards to be paid, up to $1,000. Rewards are then distributed in a private manner to the callers. Callers are eligible for rewards up to $1,000, but, despite this, many callers choose not to collect their rewards.
DOES CRIME STOPPERS WORK?
The answer is quite simply yes. Since the start of Crime Stoppers, many calls have been received resulting in thousands of arrests and recovery of substantial amounts of property. Calls have included information about murder, robbery, rape, assaults, drug and firearm offenses.
The success of a Crime Stoppers program cannot be purely judged on statistics, however, other benefits have come to notice:
- A greater awareness in the community that there is a crime problem.
- A willingness by the community to fight back against crime if it is given the opportunity and motivation.
- Improved relationships between police, media, and the community.
Crime Stoppers is definitely here to stay. It has been accepted by police as a valid and effective investigative tool and the public, through its overwhelming response, appears to have accepted it as a more palatable alternative to traditional methods of giving information.