DENVER (CBS4) – A new mobile app can get anyone with a smartphone involved in the search for a hit-and-run driver.
The app was created as a part of the Medina Alert system, which was named after Jose Medina, a man who died in a hit-and-run accident on Lincoln Street in Denver. The system has already proven to be an effective tool in solving crime. Its new mobile version will make it reach more people, making it harder for hit-and-run drivers to hide.
“People in the state of Colorado are responsible, they care about their fellow man, and they’re tired of these hit-and-runs,” Larry Stevenson said.
Stevenson took the law he wrote and put it into a phone. The Medina Alert app is low on glitz, but high on function. Users can record a message when they’ve seen a hit-and-run. It files immediately to a police database like a 911 call. It’s powered by GPS and users will get a push notice as soon as a hit-and-run is reported in their area.
More than 1,000 people have downloaded the free app since its launch on Tuesday.
“That’s 1,000 more extra eyes and ears helping police protect our streets,” Stevenson said.
On its own the Medina Alert has become a powerful deterrent. Three weeks ago 16-year-old Johnnie Duran accidentally killed his uncle in a hit-and-run. With his information spread across the state he had nowhere to hide and turned himself into police.
“So many people, including his family, saw the message boards of his truck, his license plate number, and they were telling him, ‘You’re not going to get away with this,’ “ Stevenson said.
The application makes an even bigger statement. It maps out all of the state’s hit-and-runs. Since Medina became law 23 cases have triggered the alert. Green pins on the map are 17 cases already solved. Stevenson says the app has unlimited potential and could bring down epidemic levels of hit-and-runs.
“This app is going to allow us a chance to challenge the impossible and solve the unsolvable,” he said.
The Medina Alert has been so successful that 10 other states are trying to adopt it. In Colorado, multiple counties will expand their use of the program next month.
LINK: Medina Alert App
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