Crime Stoppers returns to lock up criminals - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Crime Stoppers returns to lock up criminals

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

By Brad Kessie – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Coast crime fighters have a new ally in their quest to protect this community. That ally is you. Tuesday, the Crime Stoppers program returned to south Mississippi. Suddenly, your eyes and your anonymous tips, could help police lock up would be criminals.

What's new about Crime Stoppers is how it will use new technology to its advantage. Anonymous tips will also be accepted through www.mscoastcrimestoppers.com, through Facebook, and through Twitter.

The ultimate goal of Crime Stoppers is to get criminals off the streets and behind bars.

Mississippi Public Safety Director Steve Simpson said, "That's what Crime Stoppers really is. It is citizens in their community saying, "Enough!'"

Simpson understands the vital role you play in making Crime Stoppers successful and your neighborhoods a lot safer.

"Crime Stoppers is an arm of a community that says we've had enough; we're not going to put up with it any more. You're not going to sell dope on my corner. You're not going to steal from me and my neighbors," Simpson said. "You're not going to take what I've worked all my life to earn from me and from others."

Most of the officers at the Mississippi Coast Crime Stoppers kickoff breakfast were all part of the original program in the 1980s, but it fell apart when Katrina tore through South Mississippi.

Nearly five years later, law enforcers like Duane Caughlin realized it was time to bring Crime Stoppers back.

Duane Caughlin with the Bay St. Louis Police Department said, "Crime Stoppers is going to work because it's going to be anonymous. People will be able to call in, give the tips without giving their information."

The new Crime Stoppers will use those anonymous phone tips, website tips and texting tips to help apprehend suspects. All three coastal counties will participate in the crime fighting program.

Duane Caughlin said, "It will deter a lot of crime. It's going to help solve a lot of crime, and it's going to give law enforcement an extra tool in their belt."

The coast becomes the 50th Mississippi community to use Crime Stoppers, and its citizens to get trouble makers off the streets.

Crime Stoppers Executive Ronnie Castille said, "That's what it's about, is solving crimes."

If your tip to Crime Stoppers leads to an arrest, you're eligible for up to a $1,000 reward.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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