Since our founding in 1981, CrimeStoppers of Memphis and Shelby County has done business under the following strict guidelines and procedures:
* CrimeStoppers pays cash awards for successful citizen tips leading to arrests on felony (not misdemeanor) crimes.
* All persons who provide an anonymous tip to CrimeStoppers remain unidentified by us at all times. Tips currently can be received by phone, secure web form or cell phone app.
* Information received is passed to investigators at the Memphis Police Dept., or the Shelby County Sheriff's Office, or other law enforcement agencies with jurisdiction.
* The first tipster - earliest tip received - who provides information that leads to an arrest is eligible for an award.
* Eyewitnesses and/or victims of a crime are not eligible for an award.
* Typical award amounts, on a scale for crime types, up to $1,000 can be approved for payment.
* Awards are determined by the CrimeStoppers volunteer board of directors and decisions are final.
* If contributions are received and banked by CrimeStoppers, additional award amounts can be made above $1,000 in special cases.
* CrimeStoppers is not responsible for award pledges or promises from other individuals or organizations, and they may not use 528-CASH without our permission.
* Only special award amounts officially declared by CrimeStoppers can be paid out by CrimeStoppers for successful tips.
"These guidelines have helped us grow over the years and made it possible for us to help solve more than one crime a day," Chapman said.
He also reminds people often that CrimeStoppers is an independent, nonprofit organization that does not operate on tax dollars, and instead relies on community donations.
To read Buddy Chapman's recent guest column on this subject in
The Commercial Appeal