Phone app provides Rutherford Co. with crime information
According to Rutherford County Sheriff’s Department, the county was the second in the United States to release a new smartphone application during September designed to connect residents to law enforcement.
TNRutherfordSO is a free app that uses “push notifications,” which display information on the users’ home screen to provide current information of incidents throughout the county. The application is available for iPhone and Android users.
The application features information for citizens in jail, accounts of criminals, victim notification, county alerts, the ability to report a crime, arrest warrants, available attorneys, bail bonds, facility location, police directory and the capacity to see who has skipped child support payments.
“Imagine a child is abducted by a purple van,” said Tim Lee, director of Appriss Inc. “We send out an Amber Alert, notifying the population that the child is missing. We also attach a description of the van and child. Now, imagine that you’re filling up your gas tank at a gas station and you happen to see a suspicious purple van. You notify us using the app, and within minutes the abductor can be caught.”
Law enforcement members are finding the application useful, too.
“Some police officers have started using the app,” said Lisa Marchesoni, public information officer of Rutherford County. “It’s a good way to keep track of who is incarcerated, and who isn’t.”
The idea for the app started with Lt. Larry Pace and Appriss Inc., who worked together.
“The idea came about a year ago, and it was handed off to Appriss who handled the Victim Information and Notification Everyday (VINE), and things took off from there,” Pace said.
VINE, which is also incorporated into the application, is responsible for notifying victims when offenders or other threats are released. From there, version one of this application was started in Washington County, Ark., and was successful.
“Of the 200,000 people in the county, 60,000 currently use the application,” Lee said. “Version two of the application, which is what Rutherford County has been outfitted with, has been downloaded over 2,000 times within the past two weeks across 44 states and 10 different countries.”