January is Crime Stoppers Awareness month, and they want you to know what makes a good tip when contacting them.
Fran Myles from Crime Stoppers Manitoba says the organization is trying to get the word out about what kind of info helps them.
She explains the 5 W's are essential when reporting a crime. Who-What-Where-Why-When. However, the: "How" is the most important detail.
"By the time you answer those questions, it will probably take about 20 minutes because that's how long it takes to get enough information to the Sergeant, who gets this and can relay it to a detachment. We have to provide enough information in a tip that the police can activate and investigation."
Myles says without enough information the case will sit on a desk and not get investigated.
"Especially in the rural areas, where the police are spread so thin, and there's so much going on."
Myles, who has been with Crime Stoppers for seven years, says that she feels terrible for law enforcement having to deal with so many cases at once.
"There seems to be a real gap between what the police can do and what the public wants. Crime Stoppers does a really good job bridging that gap."
Myles adds that close to $2,000,000 of property has been recovered directly due to Crime Stoppers tips.
"There's no way that anybody can find out that you did give information," continues Myles. "You are only identified by a number, and if you don't phone back and say I'm tip #25, your tip money sits in the account until whenever. We've had people actually phone back ten years later and get their tip money."
Myles notes that somebody always knows something. Contact Crime Stoppers anonymously here if you have a tip about a crime.
1 (800) 222-8477 (TIPS)