Crime Stoppers has good participation - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Crime Stoppers has good participation

By Jim Wallace - bio | email

June 30, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Dougherty County's CRIME STOPPERS board members say recent successes for the anonymous tip line to law enforcement has them looking for ways to keep improving.

CRIME STOPPERS was started back in service in May 2006, and board members say people are calling in record numbers, and solving crimes.

This is the CRIME STOPPERS tip line at the Law Enforcement Center, inside the Albany Police Investigative Division.

 "I want to report some thievery in my backyard," said one recent caller to the line.

Albany Police credit calls to this anonymous tip line with arrests in several recent crimes, but it was especially evident in the volume of calls helping them catch the suspected shooter of Albany Police Officer Tim Harvey.

Board Member Michelle Oaks said "We've never had the influx of calls of just people wanting to be good citizens. Calling and giving us information, and not wanting the reward, not wanting to come forward. Just wanting to help the police."

Oaks is one of a dozen community volunteers at CRIME STOPPERS. That board votes on who gets rewards and how much they receive. CRIME STOPPERS has paid out about $600 in the last couple of months.

Oaks says the program works because they protect the caller's identity. "The point is not to know who they are. The point is they will never be called to court. Even when we give them their rewards, no identity is ever asked for. That's part of the beauty of this program."

Fund raisers for CRIME STOPPERS will be held this fall, to bring in more money for rewards and to have a person on hand 24 hours a day to answer the tip line.

 "To me that's a really big sign of the crime that's out there. How fed up people are with what's going on, and how much they want to help solve those crimes," Oaks said.

And Oaks says these recent arrests prove CRIME STOPPERS really works. 

The CRIME STOPPERS board has invited Lee and Worth County law enforcement to join them in their anonymous tip lne

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