Eyes on crime online as police prepare to launch new North East pages

ONLINE: Acting Inspector Ash Mason says new Facebook pages covering Wangaratta and Wodonga will be positive for crime fighting in the regions. Picture: BLAIR THOMSON

ONLINE: Acting Inspector Ash Mason says new Facebook pages covering Wangaratta and Wodonga will be positive for crime fighting in the regions. Picture: BLAIR THOMSON

POLICE will soon have access to online crime fighting tools with the launch of two new Facebook pages.

Eyewatch sites will launch on the social media service covering the Wangaratta region on Monday and the Wodonga region on Tuesday.

The pages are in use in other police areas across the state, with the Wangaratta and Wodonga pages to be the 51st and 52nd in use.

Police use the pages to share images and information about wanted people, missing people, and assist with crime prevention.

Acting Inspector Ash Mason said the pages would be a good way to share information with the public.

“The idea is to connect and engage with our community in a timely fashion,” he said.

“It allows us to connect with the community online for engagement, crime prevention, and have our community members assist us with solving crimes.

“The Eyewatch pages have been created to help local communities keep up to date with initiatives and local police updates.”

Albury police have run an Eyewatch page since early 2012.

Some North East officers have previously expressed concerns about missing vital intelligence by not having the pages running in the area.

The Victorian and NSW forces have a combined following of close to a million people across nearly 100 local pages.

Acting Inspector Mason said he was looking forward to the pages launching next week.

“We’re asking anyone who visits, works or lives in the local government areas of Wangaratta, Alpine and Moira, that they like the Eyewatch Wangaratta Police Service area Facebook page and share it with their friends,” he said.

“Also with the Wodonga page, anyone who visits, works or lives in the local government areas of Wodonga, Indigo, Towong or Albury, we ask them to like the Wodonga page and share it with their friends.

“There are numerous examples where police have released information and engaged with the community, and information and intel has fed back to police and resulted in the identification of suspects and offenders wanted for various types of crimes across the state.”

Police plan to post information about a variety of crimes and incidents.

“I’m looking forward to getting them up and running,” Acting Inspector Mason said.