Law enforcement welcomes tips using latest tool

Residents can help serve as eyes and ears for the Minot Police Department with the department’s implementation of an anonymous tip line.

Tip411 partnered with the North Dakota Sheriffs and Deputies Association to offer the NDTip app in 2020.

Minot Police Chief John Klug told the Minot City Council earlier this month that the time now is right for his department to directly receive tips.

“The biggest part for law enforcement is if we have seven officers out, they can only be in seven places. But if we have 50 people in the community that are willing to text a tip to us about a crime happening, that’s 50 more sets of eyes,” he said. “It just gives us one more way to connect with people in an anonymous way to report crime to us. It’s not monitored 24/7, so if it is an emergency, we would ask that they call dispatch or call 911.”

The program operates through a phone app or web-based app that lets users choose the agency and then add the tip. Although residents will need to enter personal information to set up the app, none of that information is disclosed to law enforcement, Klug said.

Anyone can send an anonymous tip via text message by entering 847411 (tip411) in the “To” field. In the body of the text, enter the law enforcement agency to receive the tip, such as MinotPD for police and WardND for sheriff, and then add the tip.

If no agency is identified, the 411 service will vet the information to determine the appropriate agency, although the delivery process will be slowed, Klug said. The service provides the ability to attach photos or videos.

Residents can opt to be contacted for more information without losing anonymity. Residents and businesses also can opt in to a reverse system that lets them receive nonemergency communication from law enforcement.


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