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Facebook 10 years later: law enforcement uses site for tips

The Shreveport Police Department says social media adds a unique crime fighting element to their arsenal, because of how instant you can get information.
It's been 10 years since the social media phenomenon known as Facebook invaded computer screens around the world.

The networking site, originally meant for college students, has expanded.

People connect with friends and relatives, businesses use it for advertising and law enforcement can even use the site to help fight crime.

The Shreveport Police Department says social media adds a unique crime fighting element to their arsenal, because of how instant you can get information.

Officers can get to a computer, tablet or phone and access tips from the public.

SPD is on Facebook, Twitter and just today the department launched an Instagram page. 

Cpl. Marcus Hines says just recently, investigators were able to identify an armed robbery suspect at the Brookshire’s on Pines Road after posting surveillance video and pictures on Facebook.

While there's no replacing traditional police work in the streets, Cpl. Hines says social media has benefits.

"What we've learned through using social media is that it gives us a closer more collaborative relationship with the public,” says Cpl. Hines. “The public has come to expect ways into which to communicate with us and also ways that we can communicate with the public it makes it more efficient. These things are important in today's age when getting information out to the masses is very crucial."

Cpl. Hines says they've gotten information from as far away as California, Canada and Spain.

On the other side of the river, the Bossier City Police Department isn't on social media.

Public Information Officer Mark Natale says a good source for tips is the Bossier Crimestoppers hotline.

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