The 'Crime Stoppers Effect' in solving crime

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - On nearly a daily basis KSLA News 12 gives out the phone number for Shreveport Crime Stoppers, asking for the public's help in solving a crime.  But now we're asking, 'how much does Crime Stoppers help?'  Here's what we discovered:

On February 21, just after 1-o'clock in the afternoon a gunman shot and killed Christopher Davenport at the driveway of a home at 605 West 74th Street in south Shreveport.  A tip to Shreveport Crime Stoppers led to an arrest and a thousand dollar reward.

"I would like to see justice done for my friend, Chris Davenport, because he was a good friend of ours," lamented James Murray.  He's heard all about the so-called 'street code' about no snitching.  But Murray cited the murder of his friend as an example of when that code does not apply.  "You kill a man, an unarmed man, I think that's a coward way out."

Corporal Craig Ivy, a Shreveport Police detective explained, "a lot of crimes would probably go unsolved if we didn't have Crime Stoppers."  Such anonymous tips to the hotline can often get the ball rolling in a case.  "I've had several cases where the tip actually helped solve the case," continued Cpl. Ivy.

We also met people genuinely afraid they would be discovered as the caller, while others stick by the street code of silence as the reason they won't call in a crime.

But, Corporal Bill Goodin of the Shreveport Police Department wanted to get across one message to the public:  "It's not about us versus them.  We all have to live here together and when there's a violent crime committed in the city of Shreveport it helps us all to put those offenders in jail."

In just the last month, Shreveport Crime Stoppers received 470-calls, which translated into 39 tips, which then led to 14-arrests in 11-cases, along with nearly 8-grand in reward money.  And so far this year, just under 400 tips have come in, leading to 72-arrests and reward money totalling 29-and-a-half thousand dollars.

While a tip to Crime Stoppers can lead to anything from two hundred to a thousand dollar reward, we're told that folks who call in say it's not about the money. In fact, some even refuse a reward.  To them it's about making the place where they live a little bit safer, even if there are risks involved.