Crime Stoppers raises reward amount to $1,500 — will it matter?

Bluegrass Crime Stoppers recently raised its cash bonus for information leading to an arrest by 50% to $1,500, up from $1,000.

Crime Stopper’s website says it received 106 actionable tips that led to arrests in 2021, with 49 firearms recovered.

Our Take

While short term cash is nice, many residents of Lexington’s disadvantaged neighborhoods do not feel comfortable coming forward. Sometimes the fear stems from personal safety — “snitches get stitches,” after all.

In other cases their hesitancy to come forward is rooted in a distrust and sometimes fear of the police. A good example of this would be a drug user who witnesses a random assault on a homeless man, but doesn’t help investigators because they worry they will be arrested themselves (for the drugs or otherwise.)

Another solution is needed. LFUCG adopted a substantial increase to health and social services in the $451,409,415 FY2023 operating budget, but some still feel that is not enough, especially when also spending $275,000 for more of the new FLOCK license plate reading cameras and a total of $5 Million to keep police cars up-to-date. No one has all the answers, but we can all agree that throwing more money at tipsters isn’t going to make a dent in Lexington’s existing gun violence problem.

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