New York City callers to 911 and 311 are now able to send photos or video to assist in crime fighting and to report quality of life complaints. Callers to 911 will be able to send photos or video from a cell phone or computer to the NYPD’s Real Time Crime Center, where relevant images may be used to assist in crime fighting or in responding to other emergencies.
The City of New York has also launched a program that allows the public to submit still images and/or audio/video files of select conditions that occur in the City, by calling 311 or by visiting NYC.gov. The public will be able to send pictures and videos from computers and web-enabled cell phones and PDAs to accompany certain 311 quality of life complaints, such as:
reporting an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) complaint in Parks and facilities
reporting animal violations, maintenance or facility issues, or rules violation in Parks
reporting dirty vacant lots
reporting broken/defaced public pay phones
reporting missing/damaged street sign
reporting pothole, street, highway & sidewalk construction complaint
reporting Muni meter, parking meter or parking card problems
reporting Street & Sidewalk conditions (e.g., damage or defects to a Bus Stop Shelter
reporting a Municipal Parking facility request.
report a pothole
Another program was recently added to permit text messaging to the Crime Stopper program in New York City. In addition to calling 1-800-577-TIPS, members of the public may now text message crime tips anonymously by texting CRIMES or 274637, and then entering TIP577.
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg stated, “I built a business on the idea that we could improve companies’ performance by delivering better information instantaneously, and I’ve tried to bring that same philosophy to government … By upgrading 911 and 311 to accept photos and video, we are bringing government accountability – and crime-fighting – to a whole new level. If your cell phone is equipped with a camera – and many are these days – you might be able to get a picture of something that will help the police solve a crime.”
Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly added, “When it comes to crime fighting, a picture is worth more than a thousand words … This is just one more tool to help the public help the police in our powerful partnership.”