Crimestoppers marks 30 years of catching criminals

A Crimestoppers advert
A Crimestoppers advert. Credit: ITV News Anglia

It's 30 years since Crimestoppers was founded and in that time thousands of crimes have been solved thanks to anonymous tip-offs from the public.

It was a concept that started in the United States and developed in Norfolk where police officers and local businesses joined forces in a partnership to tackle crime.

Crimestoppers website
Crimestoppers is 30 years old. Credit: Crimestoppers/PA Archive/Press Association Images

It's proved a real success story, with other areas of the country taking it on. In our region alone, 4400 calls were made to Crimestoppers last year, resulting in 300 arrests.

John Smith was a detective working in Great Yarmouth when it began in 1983 and he believes it was a valuable tool in fighting crime.

Previously we relied on trusted informants who were being paid, but now we were getting useful calls from ordinary members of the public who felt safe because they could offer information without anyoneknowing where it had come from."

– John Simth, former detective
A Crimestoppers poster
A Crimestoppers poster Credit: ITV News Anglia

30 years on, Insp Nick Cheshire believes Crimestoppers remains just asrelevant today.

He said: "We still get a lot of useful information from it and just putting a Crimestoppers leaflet through a door in an area where there's a bit ofcrime often has the desired effect of letting them know we're around and watching."

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