KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A new initiative by the city and Knoxville Police Department aims to get citizens involved with stopping crime while assuaging fears about becoming a law enforcement informant.
The two are launching the East Tennessee Valley Crime Stoppers Program. The program will allow citizens to share information about criminal activity or fugitive locations with law enforcement 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. The program will have no caller ID, no recorded lines and no phone tracking.
“We have recognized the need for a local Crime Stoppers program for some time and were already moving in that direction at the tail end of last year,” Knoxville Chief of Police Eve Thomas said the new program will be a tremendous asset to the department.
“We have recognized the need for a local Crime Stoppers program for some time and were already moving in that direction at the tail end of last year,” Knoxville Chief of Police Eve Thomas said the new program will be a tremendous asset to the department. “However, the recent uptick in gun violence, particularly the violence that resulted in the death of multiple high school students, accelerated that process.
“This will be another important tool to assist the KPD in its mission to keep Knoxville safe. This also provides a platform that encourages citizens to actively participate in that mission. Public safety is a shared responsibility that requires vigorous community involvement and willingness to push back against crime.”
If the information given leads to an arrest, the recovery of weapons, narcotics, stolen property, or the capture of a wanted person, those callers may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.
Anyone with information about a crime, wanted fugitive or any criminal activity occurring in the city is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), visit www.easttnvalleycrimestoppers.org to submit an online tip, or download the free mobile app, P3 Tips, from either the Google Play or Apple App Store. Tipsters will remain completely anonymous throughout the entire process of submitting a tip through receiving a cash reward if eligible.
Though new to Knoxville, Crime Stoppers has been in existence since 1976. Presently, there are more than 1,000 Crime Stoppers programs in operation worldwide.
As of Jan. 21, tips or information submitted through Crime Stoppers nationwide had resulted in more than 775,000 arrests and the clearance of more than a million cases with $117 million paid out in reward money.
Additionally, more than $2 billion of drugs have been seized based on Crimes Stoppers tips. To learn more about Crime Stoppers, visit www.crimestoppersusa.org.