Fayetteville business owner introduces crime tips app

Friday, December 12, 2014
Fayetteville business owner introduces crime tips app
Joe McGee's app would allow students and community members to send anonymous tips to police.

FAYETTEVILLE (WTVD) -- Joe McGee sat in the pews at Simon Temple AME Zion Church last month listening to the angst.

"What are we going to do about youth violence, or violence in general and why don't people speak up," asked McGee.

Those are some of the issues community leaders gathered to talk about in a town hall that meeting. McGee spoke up, and said he had a digital solution. A crime tips app.

Earlier this month, McGee launched iseeitext.com, a site application he believes is a mobile response to a big community issue.

"Well they want to say something, but nobody wants to be the first one to say something," said McGee. "This app gives them the ability to speak up and give that information to the SRO."

Here's how it works. Participating schools and neighborhood watch groups can add themselves to a listserv. If someone wants to report a tip, they can anonymously submit the information by clicking on their school or neighborhood. That info would go directly to a School Resource Officer or a law enforcement official.

Site maintenance and revenue are generated through business advertisers who pay $1 a day to showcase their banner. The site currently has several advertisers who are on board with the mission.

McGee has been pitching the idea to local police departments, and made presentations in Red Springs and the Town of Spring Lake this week. He's hoping school systems will come on board too.

Local law enforcement have cited a lack of cooperation as a hindering factor in many recent high-profile cases, including the murders of local high school students and young adults. McGee said the app of anonymity and convenience can ease hesitation in coming forward.

For Annette Bunce, a Fayetteville native and manager at LaFayette Ford, it was a no-brainer.

"Do you look in the face of any child that you may pass, or your own child sitting across from you at your dinner table and think if they weren't there for one dollar? Can you put a price on that," asked Bunce.

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