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Crime Stoppers hopes to halt gun crime

DECATUR -- Macon County Crime Stoppers has a creative new way to help keep illegal guns off the streets and it could mean extra cash in your wallet.
DECATUR -- Macon County Crime Stoppers has a creative new way to help keep illegal guns off the streets and it could mean extra cash in your wallet. WCIA-3's Ashley Michels explains.

"Any time you deal with a city of this size, any crime involving any type of weapon like that is going to be a big problem."

That's why police here are trying to tackle gun crimes head on.

"It's not a problem right now, but we're wanting to be a little more proactive."

In the past, law enforcement has tried buy-back programs where they pay people who turn in guns voluntarily. But, the Macon County Sheriff says it wasn't a huge success.

“Public perception-wise it was a success in getting guns off the street. But they weren’t targeting the real people that they wanted to target; people that potentially would be out there doing some type of harm with that weapon.”

So, they're trying something new. The idea is to get the whole community involved to help make the city's streets a little safer. Now, if you know or see someone with an illegal firearm, and your tip leads to an arrest, you'll get $500 as a reward.

"I think it's a good idea because people are motivated by money."

Which is fine with police as long as the job gets done.

"We know that we are nothing without the community involvement, so many times, we try to solve crimes and there's just so far you can go with that."

The sheriff's office says, if you see a gun crime, call police right away. But, if you want the reward, you have to call Crime Stoppers.

Decatur & Macon County Crime Stoppers
(217) 423 - TIPS
https://www.tipsubmit.com/WebTips.aspx?AgencyID=180
Text: DPD333 + info to CRIMES (274637)
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