Fishers Police Department Improves CrimeWatch App
The Fishers Police Department recently announced its new and improved Fishers CrimeWatch app – Relay, a community engagement and crime prevention app.
The app, which has served residents since 2016, is used to report non-emergency crimes. Relay is free to download via the Apple and Google Play stores.
Fishers Police Chief Ed Gebhart says the Relay app is designed to improve citizen and officer safety.
“If you see a suspicious vehicle, erratic driving, have an animal concern or anything that seems out of place, you can take a picture and submit it through the app,” Gebhart says. “A nearby officer will receive your report immediately, and then they will self-dispatch themselves to solve the incident in the most timely manner. The officer can connect back with the citizens to ask any questions about the report and to let the citizens know when their report has been resolved.”
The Relay app improves communications. It now includes a streamlined user interface and improved feedback and updates to residents who submit issues.
“Our app is unique because it gives citizens a direct way to connect with nearby law enforcement,” Gebhart adds. “If citizens give permission, officers can message them to ask any relevant questions and to send updates on when the incident is resolved. Citizens can now receive alerts from local law enforcement to highlight trends in the area so they can feel safer wherever life takes them. The Relay app is available to citizens across the country and will route incidents to the appropriate agencies. The software is integrated with existing police dispatch systems to make it easier for officers to view and respond to reports while in their patrol vehicle.”
The Relay app is also easy to use.
“When you launch the app, a map pops up and it will show you any incidents that have been submitted near you,” Gebhart says. “So even if you are not planning on submitting incidents, the app is still extremely useful for citizens to stay in-the-know on what is going on in the area that they are in at any given time.”
More than 6,000 Fishers residents use the app to report non-emergency crimes to the Fishers Police Department.
“Our number one goal is to serve and protect our community, which we believe this does,” Gebhart says. “The app allows citizens to not only submit non-emergency incidents directly to nearby law enforcement, but it also allows citizens to see what type of reports are submitted and where. On top of that, the app has a feature so citizens can receive real-time alerts from local law enforcement. Officers can push notifications to alert their community of threats in their area, locations to avoid from accidents and much more.”
Fishers police officers have responded positively to it.
“Our officers really enjoy using it,” Gebhart says. “They like it for a variety of reasons. First, they love how citizens can send them a picture of the incident reported to allow them to better prepare for the situation at hand. Second, they like using the app because it is so simple to navigate through. They like being able to self-dispatch themselves so they can solve any incident in the most efficient manner. On top of all of this, officers enjoy having the ability to connect back with the citizens to ask any relevant questions about the incident and to send them updates on the report so they can close the loop with the citizens.”
Fishers residents have also enjoyed using the app and bridging the connection with local law enforcement.
“By giving citizens the opportunity to take a picture of an incident and directly send it to nearby law enforcement, Relay truly is the future of keeping communities safe,” Gebhart says. “Relay is unique because it allows citizens with communication and accessibility issues to more easily report incidents. It is the only app on the market that has this innovative software.”
For more information, follow the Fishers Police Department on Twitter, Facebook and Nextdoor.