If January is any indication of the months to come, 2014 will be a record breaking year for Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers.
In just the first month of the year, Crime Stoppers received more tips, which led to more arrests, than any other month in recent memory.
As of recent, Crime Stoppers received 479 tips since Jan. 1, leading to the arrests of 70 fugitives and the clearing of 156 criminal cases.
Anonymous tips also led to the seizure of six weapons and $213,902 worth of stolen property and narcotics.
Historically, Crime Stoppers receives between 350 and 370 tips in a month, with an average arrest rate of 50 to 55 arrests.
"This month's numbers indicate a very clear message that the community is ready to do their part in helping rid their neighborhoods of the criminal element," said Trish Routte, Crime Stoppers coordinator. "We were extremely pleased to see an onslaught of tips on some high profile cases - whereas in years past people tended to remain silent and not come forward with what they know. We sincerely hope that trend will continue throughout the year, which will assist law enforcement in putting some of the most violent offenders plaguing Southwest Florida behind bars, where they belong."
Anyone with information on an unsolved crime or wanted fugitive can call Crime Stoppers at (800) 780-TIPS (8477).
All callers will remain anonymous and will be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000. Tips may also be made online at: www.swflcrimestoppers.org or by texting a tip to CRIMES (274637) Keyword: REWARD.