Crime Stoppers starts proactive campaign

Tip line hopes billboards prevent pill mlils

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Keeping crime from happening in your neighborhood. Yes, there is an app for that.

With a new interactive smart phone tool and a blitz of billboards across Northeast Florida, Crime Stoppers' Tip Line hopes to take a proactive approach to fighting bad guys.

"Hopefully, it'll keep some people out of jail and turn some kids' lives around," said Crime Stoppers Executive Director Wyllie Hodges.

The program is specifically aimed at shutting down pill mills. The billboards prompt people to call in doctor shoppers, suspected pill mills and bad doctors. In the year and a half since the program began, Crime Stoppers tips have been responsible for 24 arrests and the seizure of $58,000 worth of illegal pills.

Crime Stoppers is working to keep streets safer and help people report crimes anonymously who otherwise wouldn't report the crime at all.

"It's unfortunate that these hoodlums come in here thinking they can take advantage of us, knowing we have security cameras," Jessice Garces said.

Garces's neighborhood saw eight cars recently burglarized. Thanks to the new Crime Stoppers app launched this month, there are more ways than ever for people to report these crimes and lead police to an arrest.

"Everyone has these phones and they have them all the time," Garces said. "This is particularly important to school-aged children."

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