Photo: José Moré/Chicago News Cooperative
“I want to use the technology of the day to provide extra eyes and ears for the community,” Mr. Solis said. Mr. Solis’s plan would involve utilizing Google, Yahoo and Bing for filtering information sent in from residents. This would give the residents who might not trust the police to protect their identities, assurances of anonymity.
Robert Rocha with Ceasefire Chicago believes the problem is more complicated than simply protecting identities. “Not only are families in denial about any involvement their children might have with the gangs but the Hispanic culture of not talking goes way back in history.”
Chicago implemented Text-a-tip back in 2008. Compared to Boston’s use of the program begun in 2007, Chicago had only 36 text tips in the first 6 months while Boston received 694messages in the first year.
Danny Solis’s ordinance would protect the anonymity of those who report crimes to the police. He urged the residents to pick up their phone when a crime was committed and break the silence.