Website helps Shelby County Sheriff’s Office ID crooks

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Identify a crook and get a gift card. That’s the opportunity you have if you help the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office identify a wanted suspect.

You do it through a third party website that’s helping departments across the country.

A surveillance camera helps catch the crook in action while this website takes those pictures and puts the suspect on blast.

“This is another tool that we’re trying to use to solve these different crimes,” said Chief Deputy Floyd Bonner with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

The website is called IdThisPerson.com. Law enforcement from all over the country can enter their surveillance pictures of suspects from various crimes into a database. Anyone from the public can then go to the website, click on their state and start looking to see if they recognize anyone. If they do, they can submit an anonymous tip.

“If the tip is validated they usually give the person or the tipster a $25 gift card at a local, retail shop,” explained Bonner.

Bonner said his department has been using the website for the last six years or so, but they’re putting the word out again, reminding the public they can be compensated for their help. Putting their pictures on the site doesn’t cost the Sheriff’s Office a dime and Bonner said using it has helped them.

“We’ve had some success with it.”

In comparison to Crime Stoppers, Bonner said the site offers a form of compensation for misdemeanor crime tip.

According to the site, ID This Person provides the gift cards from the revenue it makes from ad sales off the site.

With the new world of social media Bonner said it’s important to engage with the public to solve crime.

“Everybody is using their iPhones, their iPads, their computers to look at different websites so we realize in law enforcement how important that tool is,” he explained.