Another tool for fighting crime

Published 11:09 pm Thursday, September 27, 2012

As you can imagine, the war on crime takes every legal trick in the book. Law enforcement officials go to great lengths — everything from high-tech surveillance to undercover work — to build cases against suspects and make our streets safer.
Advancements in technology have made the job easier, but nothing beats an extra set of eyes in the community.
The latest advancements have become commonplace for most people: texting and the Internet.
In an effort to reach out to the youth, Beaufort County Crime Stoppers now accepts anonymous tips via cellphone text or through the Internet. The anonymity should result in more leads, especially from students.
“(It’s) one of the main things I want people to know: I never see their name or number,” Crime Stoppers Coordinator Karen Ball told the Daily News this week. “We never lay eyes on each other. It’s a good thing for the children.”
Names and numbers remain confidential while the information is sent to Ball’s cellphone in real time via a third-party system. Residents who want to report a crime can send a text to 274637 and type BCSO131 plus their tip in the body of the message.
The Crime Stoppers website ( has a “Tip Line” link with an online form to complete.
Both options protect the privacy of the tipster while keeping them eligible for a reward.
The new system is a great benefit for everyone involved — parents, students, police, the community. Everyone, that is, except for the criminals.