Crime Stoppers guarantees anonymity.

Crime Stoppers guarantees anonymity.

Crime Stoppers is always anonymous

System o is key to the program’s success

  • Sep. 26, 2017 4:30 p.m.

Tim Collins / News staff

The system by which Crime Stoppers operates is at the heart of the program’s success and underlies it’s long success. The program was developed in New Mexico in 1976. Th B.C. Crime Stoppers Association was formed in 1994 as a voice for member programs across the province. The first local programs began in 1982. The Revelstoke program started in 1995.

Crime Stoppers is a registered charity and gratefully accepts donations. (revelstokecrimestoppers.ca)

Anonymity is key for the program, as it allows for people with information about a crime to tell what they know without anyone, especially the criminal, ever knowing who provided the information.

In Revelstoke, here’s how it works.

  • Anyone can call 1-800-222-TIPS(8477) with information about any crime.
  • There is no call trace or call display and no recorded conversations.
  • Callers are given a secret code number and are asked to call back after some time has elapsed to see if an arrest has resulted from the tip. The code number is the only way the person with the tip can be linked to the tip.
  • If your tip results in an arrest and charge, it will be reviewed and a value will be assigned based on the severity of the crime, the impact to the community and certain other criteria.
  • Tips can result in payments of between $50 and $2,000.
  • You are paid anonymously in cash, and never meet Crime Stoppers or the police.
  • Actual payment methods are also secret and will only be revealed to the person with the code number.
  • Payments can be made to a third person and in another city so long as the person picking up the cash has the code number.
  • Volunteers go through extensive screening and are sworn to secrecy. No one will ever know that a given arrest has resulted from a Crime Stoppers tip.
  • It’s not just about the money for people providing the information.

“A lot of people never pick up their money. They only want to do what’s right in a way that doesn’t risk reprisals,” said past president of Revelstoke Crime Stoppers, Roberta Ciolli.

“Their help is critical in helping the police, but no one will ever know who gave the tip. The system is set up so we don’t even know who gave the tip; neither do the police. We don’t want to know. We only want to keep our communities a little safer.”