The concept of Crime Stoppers was originated in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1976 by Police Detective Greg Macaleese. Members of this local community, in partnership with the media and law enforcement, began an effort to provide crime-solving assistance to law enforcement. A cash reward was offered, anonymously, to persons who telephoned the Crime Stoppers hot line with information which led to the arrest and indictment of felony offenders.
The Crime Stoppers program has enjoyed great success, boasting an average conviction rate of 95% in cases solved by Crime Stoppers Tips. The Crime Stoppers programs world-wide have solved over a million crimes and recovered over 6 billion dollars worth of stolen property and narcotics. (CSI statistics).
Today there are over 1000 Crime Stoppers programs in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, South Africa, Bahamas, British West Indies, Micronesia, and other nations.
Three Essential Elements Of A Crime Stoppers Program Are:
1. The Community
Citizens are responsible for forming a Crime Stoppers non-profit corporation, whose directors establish policy, determine amount and method of reward payments, work closely with law enforcment agencies and the media and generally oversee the program. Non-profit Crime Stoppers programs are not government funded; they are funded by donations and do not receive taxpayer money.
2. The Media
Crime Stoppers objectives and successes, along with the hot line number and email address, are well-publicized on a regular basis by its Media Partners. Unsolved "Crime of the Week" and "Most Wanted" stories are highlighted weekly by the Media Partners through newpapers, radio or television. The public is encouraged to call or email information, or crime tips, to Crime Stoppers.
3. The Police
The Police, Sheriffs' Deputies, and other Law Enforcment agencies partner with Crime Stoppers by providing information on unsolved crimes and wanted criminals. Crime Stoppers publishes this information in hopes of getting tips that will solve the crime or lead to an arrest. Callers to Crime Stoppers are given a unique code number and NEVER give their names. Crime Stoppers forwards the information, or tips, to its Law Enforcment Partners for investigation. If the tip leads to identifying and charging a felony offender, the caller is eligible for a CASH REWARD. The unique number provided to the Caller is the means by which a reward is claimed. The Caller remains ANONYMOUS.
Crime Stoppers of Metro Alabama began on January 8, 1981, as The Birmingham Area Crimestoppers Program. As our Community has grown, Crime Stoppers has grown as well. The Crime Stoppers Program works!