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Press release from the city of Asheville, shared Feb. 8:

ASHEVILLE – The Asheville Police Department recently took steps with the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office to increase the amount of crime data available online. Other new services include an iPhone app and the ability to anonymously submit tips online and through texting.

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“Providing reliable, timely information to our residents is one of our top priorities, because an informed public is a safer public,” says Interim Police Chief Wade Wood. “These tools will give us the ability to keep the public informed on a regular basis as to what is going on in the community.”

The new interactive mapping tool is available at www.crimereports.com. The website features a map that includes near real time crime data. Users can simply enter an address and see recent crime activity and the locations of registered sex offenders. More in-depth information, such as summaries of crime counts by crime type, will continue to be available through the city’s CrimeMapper application.

To text a tip, users should text “APDTIP [add message here]” to 274637 (CRIMES). This secure and anonymous tool also allows for anonymous two-way dialog between tipsters and law enforcement. Another option is to anonymously and securely submit tips online at http://www.ashevillenc.gov/Departments/Police/CrimeReports.aspx.

More information about the CrimeMapper application, CrimeReports website and the new anonymous tip tools is available on the police department’s web pages at www.ashevillenc.gov.

Angie Newsome

Angie Newsome is the executive director and editor of Carolina Public Press. Contact her at (828) 774-5290 or e-mail her at anewsome@carolinapublicpress.org.

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