Community Assisted Police Calling Program Follows Up

By: Meghan Dwyer
By: Meghan Dwyer

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- If you’ve ever called police and never heard back, that's about to change. Police are using a brand new program--one that's designed to make sure Rockford Police respond to your problem even if they can't help.

It’s called the Community Assisted Police Calling Program—CAP Calling for short. When you report a property crime like a stolen car battery or air conditioner, those volunteers will make sure your case doesn't get buried by more pressing matters.

Six volunteers make sure victims get a call back after the cases have been looked at by investigators. If there's no evidence and no suspect the police can't do much with it--but that doesn't mean it goes away. Volunteers make sure the facts get into the computer so police can look for patterns and they follow up with victims. In January, volunteers were able to call 129 people who had reported minor property crimes. About 60 couldn't be investigated further, but everyone got a call back.

Volunteer Joe Owen said, “All of us that are trained for this particular job and we have to go through an interview process and we have to go through special training--especially when it comes to empathy."

This program started at the end of December before the volunteers stepped up. A lot of people reporting these types of crimes wouldn't get any response from police.

Police say the program has been so successful they might add other types of crime like simple assaults and batteries.

If you are interesting in volunteering please log onto our web channel at wifr.com for more information on who to contact.

If you are interested in volunteering, contact Joe Owen at 815-987-8277.


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  • by Joe Location: Rockford on Feb 15, 2012 at 03:45 AM
    The Rockford Police Department is adding even more volunteer activities; lets face it, if you are willing to volunteer your time, we want you to do things you enjoy doing. Call me or stop by and pickup an application to join our CAP program. We recommend that you attend our Citizen Police Academy (CPA)prior to becoming a Citizen Assisting Police (CAP) member but it's not a must. The next CPA begins March 21st and meets Wednesdays 6 to 8 P.M. for eight weeks. Applications are available on the Rockford Police website or call, email, or see me at your next neighborhood meeting. Email jowen@rockfordil.gov
  • by Dave Location: Rockford on Feb 14, 2012 at 04:37 PM
    This is a good deal. I do think that people need to understand if a car battery is stolen it is pretty useless to call the police. Not that the police are useless but what are they going to do? People sometimes just need to know that the police can't help. Common sense in protecting your property. Light, light and more light.
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