Home-grown crime solving efforts attract global award accolades
Posted on 17/10/2019
Crime Stoppers SA has been recognised for delivering benchmark crime-solving campaigns at this year’s Crime Stoppers International Awards, after it was announced as winner of the Best Specialised Training Award and Best Media Television Award categories.
Crime Stoppers SA received the awards for a campaign designed to disrupt the local drug trade after the tripling of methamphetamine use in South Australia over a 5-year period, and its unsolved crime segment asking for help to identify a woman wanted for an assault on an Adelaide taxi driver.
Crime Stoppers SA chair, Ms Sharon Hanlon, said the award wins reinforce the very real contribution that the independent not-for-profit continues to make to the safety of South Australians, and its ability to deliver world-leading initiatives despite limited financial resources.
“Our amazing results would not be possible without the support of our valued partners, and special mention goes to Police Credit Union for committing to a significant 3-year partnership in 2017 when we were at a point of concern with our financial position. We also greatly appreciate the significant in-kind support provided by SA Police and the team at Channel 9 Adelaide, who continue to work with us to engage the community and solve crime,” Ms Hanlon said.
“Our Make the Call campaign demonstrates the strong return on investment that we can offer, with the then Labor State Government recognising our capability by funding this highly-successful initiative. Our hope is that our latest award wins encourage others to also get behind Crime Stoppers and provide much-needed financial support to offset our operation costs and fund more campaigns so that we can continue to make a real difference,” she said.
The winning categories for Crime Stoppers SA were:
Best Specialised Training Award – Make The Call campaign
After wastewater analysis found a tripling in use of methamphetamine over a 5-year period in South Australia, Crime Stoppers delivered a 6-month campaign targeting makers and dealers of amphetamine/meth-amphetamine – particularly street level and online dealers.
A comprehensive community engagement campaign – which included a series of regional launches, localised advertising tactics and eye-catching promotional materials – was developed and implemented to encourage people with information about manufacturing and selling of methamphetamine to anonymously contact Crime Stoppers.
Key campaign results included:
- 5 regional community roadshows held in key country locations;
- 4193 contacts regarding illicit drugs (with 1126 of those specifically related to amphetamines);
- 28 persons arrested and 31 reported;
- Five clandestine laboratories shut down;
- 480g of methamphetamine, 7,484mls of fantasy and 300ml of ‘other’ liquid drugs seized;
- Cannabis, cocaine, LSD, cannabis oil, prescription medications and $79,50 cash seized;
- Eight firearms and ammunition located, as well as tasers, batons and knives.
Best Media Television Award – Golden Grove taxi assault
Taxi drivers face a constant barrage of abuse, drunken and aggressive passengers, and regular fare evaders, and that became all too real for one Adelaide driver at about 2am on 1st October 2016.
That ride was the start of what would become a 2-year search to identify his violent female passenger, who refused to pay the fare, punched the driver in the face and ran off after arriving at Golden Grove. Despite clear CCTV imagery of the woman and extensive enquiries she was not able to be identified. Faced with a stalled investigation, police approached Crime Stoppers for help, believing that someone would be able to provide that vital piece of information.
Airing of a 30-second unsolved crime segment, produced in partnership with Channel 9, saw two calls to Crime Stoppers which identified the woman. She was located and charged with failing to pay for a taxi fare, aggravated assault and property damage.
“We are very proud that Crime Stoppers has helped to solve more than 32,500 crimes and more than 21,000+ people have been apprehended since it first began in SA. An average of 25 crimes continue to be solved every week as a direct result of information provided by the community, with one apprehension made for every seven calls received,” Ms Hanlon said.
“The statistics demonstrate that we make a real difference. In 2018 alone we received more than 25,000 phone and web reports received which resulted in police making 822 apprehensions. A total of 82 firearms were seized during the year, and an estimated 80,035 cannabis and 12,227 amphetamine street deals stopped,” she said.
An independent report commissioned by Crime Stoppers Australia in 2018 found the program remains Australia’s most recognised and pre-eminent information reporting service, delivering a return of $11.15 in additional value for every dollar invested. The report also found that 82% of people feel safer knowing the program is in place, and 62% said Crime Stoppers made it more likely they would report information.
About the CSI Awards
The Crime Stoppers International annual awards recognise leading individuals, programs, activities and campaigns from around the world for excellence and for their contribution to the achievement of the Crime Stoppers International vision – to help stop, solve and prevent crime globally. This year’s winners were announced at an Awards Presentation Ceremony, held in conjunction with the 2019 Crime Stoppers International Annual Conference in Singapore, in front of an international audience of Crime Stoppers delegates and distinguished guests.