Freeport Police Department adds anonymous crime tip service

Published: Feb. 14, 2023 at 6:30 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Advancements in technology make reporting crimes in your neighborhoods a lot easier and safer.

Tip411 is the newest tool in the Freeport Police Department’s crime-solving arsenal. Not only will it provide valuable clues in an investigation, but it also hides the identity of the person providing the tip.

“This will give an avenue where there’s no way the police department will ever know who’s sending a tip in,” said Freeport Police Chief Matthew Summers.

Officers manning Freeport’s Tip411 are ready to listen. The service went online Monday allowing people in the Freeport area to text pieces of information or send pictures and video to police.

“An illegally parked car, it could be a problem house in a neighborhood, it could be, you know, maybe something happened on the streets,” Summers said. “Somebody doesn’t want to come forward and say something, they could send a tip to an officer.”

Stephenson County already uses the Stateline Area Crime Stoppers program, which gathers tips and gives rewards. It received 69 calls from October through November. Summers believes the 411 service will add a level of transparency between his department and the public but may also prevent crime and violence from escalating.

“The community can call us and let us know, ‘hey something might be happening here’ and get our officers there before something bad happens,” Summes said.

Rockford implemented its 411 system nearly a year ago and is considered a valuable tool. Arles Hendershott of the Rockford Area Crime Stoppers says every little bit helps and is happy about Freeport’s new service.

“Somebody always knows something about what happens with a crime, and you need to give people many options when it comes to providing that information in a way that’s comfortable for them,” Hendershott said.

The Tip411 alert system is only used for people who have information regarding a crime or see something suspicious. For an emergency, still call 911.

People can submit a tip through the Tip411 alert system’s texting service, the Freeport Police Department app or the form on their website.