Tampa police now have another tool to fight crime but there’s a catch – they need your help to do it.
The police department is now one of many in the Tampa Bay area to partner with Ring, utilizing video posted on the Neighbors app.
“Video, in general, has become such a major tool for us,” said Steve Hegarty, spokesman for Tampa police.
The Ring doorbell camera is extremely popular and works with the app.
Police are now able to see what’s posted on the app but officials said all names are anonymous.
Hegarty said investigators can’t use the video without permission. All they have to do is ask the owner to use the video and the person will have the option to accept or decline in the app, according to Hegarty.
He said in most cases, users agree to let detectives use the video for an investigation.
A porch pirate was arrested after being recorded by a Ring doorbell camera stealing from a South Tampa family.
Hegarty said the high-quality footage was uploaded to the Neighbors app, which then led to officers being able to charge the suspect.
People using the app are still encouraged to file police reports and not just post to the app if they have video of a crime being committed.
Officers are set to finish up training before fully moving forward with the partnership.