HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - There’s a new high-tech way to catch criminals, and law enforcement agencies in Horry County are using it to solve crimes. It’s a neighborhood crime watch in the palm of your hands.
The Horry County and Myrtle Beach Police Departments are partnering with the Neighbors app by Ring. It’s free to download, and you don’t need the Ring device in order to join.
The app allows you to upload surveillance video from any system right into the app. You can also see videos and crime tips that other users and police departments have shared in your neighborhood. If detectives are investigating a case, they can reach out to you for help solving it.
“Just imagine, with the Neighbors app we actually have video of crimes in progress so we can capture faces, clothing, behavior, and also vehicles. That is instrumental in helping us solve these crimes more quickly and getting these people out of our community," Horry County Police Chief Joseph Hill said.
Myrtle Beach police said so far it’s working.
“We’ve had some neighbors that have been involved in this program who have posted their first test with a video that resulted in a recent arrest because of this," Myrtle Beach Police Chief Amy Prock said.
While Myrtle Beach and Horry County are just in the beginning stages, other law enforcement agencies across the country have used the app since last year. WMBF News reached out to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office in Florida who says the app has become an integral part of their daily operations, helping them solve a number of crimes with the help of the community.
Police here said that’s the goal, and they believe it will change the way they fight crime.
Officials say the app is completely private, police don’t have access to any information or video unless you decide to share it with them.