AURORA - The Aurora police department launched new Facebook and Twitter accounts in an effort to fight back against car thefts called APD Steal Alerts.
"It's active. It's real time. It goes out to a large audience," Crystal McCoy, Aurora Police Public Information Officer, said. "It just really helps to have more eyes on the problem right now. We've had nearly a 15 percent increase."
Between January 1 and October 9 of this year, 1,136 vehicles were reported stolen in the city up from this time last year.
Now when someone reports a stolen vehicle, the information will be posted on newly created social media accounts. Police hope that posting the information quickly will help them recover those vehicles and return them to their owners.
"This is very important and this goes out with every single tweet that you see for APD Steal Alert, do not approach. Call 911," McCoy said. "It is not worth anyone's safety to approach them, to be driving one-handed and taking a picture. Don't do those things. Just call 911, tell us where you're at. Don't follow it."
At least 6 stolen vehicles were posted on the social media accounts on Saturday.
McCoy says the use of social media has come a long way for the police department.
"We can't afford to get rid of this tool," McCoy said. "It's invaluable. It allows us to communicate immediately, effectively."
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