What is Lancaster County Crime Stoppers?
It is a volunteer organization of local citizens and business people dedicated to the reduction of crime, to the prompt solution of crimes, and to rewarding persons who provide information that leads to the arrest of criminals. Boiled down into simpler terms, Crime Stoppers is a group of concerned people who gather funds to reward individuals who provide information anonymously to our police agencies so that they can solve unsolved crimes.
What Type of Organization is Lancaster City-County Crime Stoppers?
Crime Stoppers is a non-profit, tax exempt corporation which was founded in 1987 through the efforts of the Kiwanis Club of Lancaster, Pennsylvania State Police, Lancaster City Police and the Lancaster County Chiefs of Police Association, as well as citizens of the State. The By-Laws for the organization were adopted in May 1987. Crime Stoppers is currently partnered with Lancaster Newspapers.
How Does Crime Stoppers Work?
Crime Stoppers utilizes a multimedia approach, for solving crime, designed to gather evidence and information on unsolved crimes through the cooperation of all the local media. Each week a fugitive or unsolved crime is selected by the Crime Stoppers Police Coordinator, who distributes the information as supplied by the investigating agency, to the media publication. This is known as the Crime of the Week and will result in a reward of up to $1,000 to the individual who supplied the information needed to solve the crime.
Why is Crime Stoppers Different?
Crime Stoppers is different from all other programs designed to gather criminal information because in this program the informant can remain completely anonymous and still receive the reward money. This is accomplished by the use of the Crime Stoppers telephone hotline, text a tip and web tip.
After the Media provides the details of the crime of the week,they will also provide a telephone number for the informant to call. When and individual has information about the Crime of the Week or other unsovled crimes, they simply have to pick up the telephone and call the Crime Stoppers Hotline. The caller is assigned a number with no names given. If the information qualifies the individual for a reward, it is publicized through the media with instructions for the individual to call the hotline for further details When texting a tip see here. When using web tip see here.
How is the Program Administered?
Crime Stoppers is administerd by a civilian Board of Directors who have complete control of the operations of the organization. The Board, with advice from all Lancaster City-County law enforcement agencies and primarily the Crime Stoppers Police Coordinator, will determine the amount of the reward and which informant(s) merit reward money. (In some cases more than one informant can contribute to solving a crime.)
How is the Program Funded?
Contributions are being solicited from service organizations, social clubs, business men-women, corporations, and interested residents. Crime Stoppers is a non-profit, tax exempt organization under Section 501(C)(3) of the IRS Code, so all contributions wil be tax exempt.
Mail contributions to :
Lancaster City-County Crime Stoppers P.O. Box 7475
Lancaster PA, 17604
Frequently Asked Questions About Tipping
Is it 100% anonymous?
Yes, none of the information exchanged over the system is logged so there is no way to track the originator of a text or web tip.
What if the tip is related to an emergency or a situation where we need to find out who they are?
If it’s clearly an emergency situation, direct them to call 911 immediately. Since the system is two way, you can converse via the text chat, but since its 100% anonymous they may choose not to provide any identifying information.
Can we issue a Subpoena to identify the tipster’s information?
Since the tip originators information is not logged and it’s 100% anonymous, there is no way to find that information out. However, you will have the actual tip(s) archived on the system if you need to produce it.
Can we contact the tipster again in the future?
Yes, at any time you can revisit a tip to reengage the tipster. They of course are not required to respond but you do have the opportunity to stay “tethered”.