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I keep hearing about Crime Stoppers in our county, but I rarely hear of them paying out a tip.  That’s a true statement.  Why don’t they pay when someone calls with information?  “I called, and I don’t think that’s fair.  I told the officer exactly where the offender was…”   
 
“Well, I called 936-348-3100 and waited on hold. Why should I wait until an operator comes back to the line?  Then, when she finally answered, she quizzed me like nobody’s business!!  I just wanted to tell her something very simple like, ‘That guy on the wanted poster at the courthouse visits right down the street from me on Wednesday nights.’  I don’t think he’s dangerous, but I may not know the whole story.” 
 
These are legitimate concerns, even for me, who has served on the Madison County Crime Stoppers Board of Directors for over 15 years.  Simply put, “Madison County Crime Stoppers exists to stop the criminal in your community”.  Crime Stoppers is based on the idea that “someone other than the criminal has information that can solve a crime.”   It’s a proven theory and, if used correctly, can greatly influence crime in a community.
 
Since 2000, 22 suspects in Madison County have been arrested due to information provided on Crime Stoppers tips.  Thirty-four offenses have been cleared.  Almost 400 tips have been received and 20 tipsters were awarded rewards.  Due to the tips received here locally, over $27,000 in stolen property has been recovered.  We could be doing so much more!!
 
Did you know that all Crime Stoppers tipsters remain anonymous?  That’s right. Only you know who you are when you call!  You don’t give the call taker any information about who you are, where you live, or anything else.  You only share information related to the wanted person or the crime.  Our Crime Stopper calls are answered by a service outside of our area and the call takers are trained to only record information that does not allow anyone to know your identity.  They don’t even say if you are male or female when they pass the tip along! 
 
True, they may ask you for more information and it CAN seem like they’re really drilling you! However, sometimes they know which questions to ask, as related to the crime or wanted person - that you might not think to tell!  Once you give the call taker your tip information, she will assign a tipster number for you.  Please write it down!  In the event YOUR TIP is THE ONE that causes an offender to be arrested, the Crime Stoppers Board of Directors COULD PAY YOU MONEY!    So, you’ll need to call back after the first Friday of the next month, give them your tipster number, and ask if there’s a payout for that tip!
 
Please DO NOT CALL the Sheriff’s Office or Police Department to check on the status of your tip!  Once you make that call directly to law enforcement, you are no longer eligible to receive the tip award, since you may no longer be anonymous!  You must converse THROUGH the call center at 936-348-3100 to receive the $ award!
 
If you don’t want to call the call center, you can always TEXT A TIP!  Just text “MUSTANG” followed by your message to 274637(CRIMES). (Standard text rates apply.)  Remember, with good information that leads to the arrest of a felon, Crime Stoppers may PAY YOU up to $1000.  That may help all of us Stay Safe Out There!





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