Wednesday April 13, 2005
Neighborhood involvement continues to be the key to reducing crime, Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson and Police Chief Robert White said at a news conference today announcing the expansion of several crime-reduction initiatives.
Abramson cited that Louisville Metro’s continuing commitment to various neighborhood-based efforts resulted in 74 arrests in 24 weeks - roughly three arrests per week, or one arrest every other day.
“Many times, little things like filling out a tip-card, or calling our tips hotline make the difference between an ongoing investigation and a closed case,” Abramson said.
Police Begin Hotline Push
White said the Police Department is launching a marketing campaign to aggressively promote its designated tips hotline, 574-LMPD.
“We want 574-LMPD to become automatic for crime tips, just like 9-1-1 is known as the emergency number,” he said.
The department is partnering with Maloney Outdoor Advertising for a billboard advertising campaign to promote the hotline. Maloney Outdoor donated space for 40 billboards in locations across the community, and marketing students at Sullivan University helped develop the “Got Crime?”
campaign. Peter Maloney of Maloney Outdoor estimates the billboards will be seen more than 3.4 million times over the course of the next 12 months, or an average of more than 115,000 times each day. Public-service announcements on Insight cable and Metro TV also will promote the hotline. Since the 574-LMPD hotline was first launched in October 2004, the police department has fielded more than 1,300 phone calls.
Tip Cards in new language and locations
The police department’s “Quicktip” cards initiative - which allow residents to anonymously mail in information pertaining to crimes - will be expanded. The cards will be distributed in new locations, including Louisville Free Public Library branches, Neighborhood Place locations and through school resource officers.
Texas Roadhouse and PrinTex USA provided funding to print 30,000 tip cards, including 2,500 cards printed in Spanish. The cards were initially distributed last October through police divisions as well as Texas Roadhouse and Thorntons locations.
Neighborhood Watch programs shifted to Police
To allow more interaction between police and neighborhood leaders, Metro Government has shifted the function of Neighborhood Watch coordination from the Department of Neighborhoods to the police Community Relations Division.
Renee Stigall, formerly of Neighborhoods, has joined the Police Department as community outreach coordinator, a civilian position.
Representatives of more than 20 neighborhood block watch programs attended today’s press conference.
Abramson also cited the “Louisville’s Most Wanted” and “Louisville Law and Order” public-service segments airing on network television stations as contributing to the overall crime-reduction effort.
“As we continue to encourage and expand our neighborhood-based initiatives, it is easier than ever before for our residents to become more involved with the police in working against crime,” Abramson said.