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Wisconsin Crime Alert Network up and running


MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - A statewide alert system has been activated to help local police and interested residents stay up to date on crime trends and missing persons.

The Wisconsin Crime Alert Network was authorized by the state Legislature and former Governor Jim Doyle last year.

The Justice Department created it, and police agencies around the state are now using it.

La Crosse Police are among those encouraging local residents to subscribe. Captain Jason Melby says the more people know about their community, the better off they’ll be.

State Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says the alerts will increase law enforcement’s “eyes and ears.” He says it will result in more criminals being caught, and more missing children being found.

Wisconsin is the second state to have a crime alert network. Neighboring Minnesota is the first.

The public can subscribe for $12 a year, which will cover its costs. Counties can send general crime alerts to their residents. Or they can send targeted information to 50 types of people and businesses – including banks, pharmacies, and retail stores.

Alerts are sent by both e-mail and text message. More information is available online at WisconsinCrimeAlert.Gov.