WASHINGTON (WDVM) — The Metropolitan Police Department and Bureau of Alchohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives announced a partnership in the District that will reward residents for helping law enforcement locate illegal firearms on Monday, November 22. The District’s Crime Data at a Glance shows that homicides are up 12% from 2020. The increase in violent crimes led to this partnership.
There is currently a cash reward system of up to $2,500 with D.C. Police for providing information leading to the recovery, arrest and conviction of any person/persons with illegal firearms. This new partnership adds an extra $5,000 if specific guns are found, and does not require any conviction.
Police Chief Robert Contee explained, “Everything remains anonymous. A person calls in a tip. That tip leads to an arrest. Once that citizen calls that tip in, they get a number. Once an arrest is made, that person gets paid.”
The number a person is given is their tip number. There is nothing identifiable exchanged between authorities and the person calling. To call in a tip, a person should call 202-727-9099. There is also an anonymous text line, which is 50411.
Charlie Patterson, the Special Agent in Charge of the Washington Field Division for ATF, said. “The gun violence has to end, and we will continue meeting the challenges of disrupting this vicious shooting cycle.”
The extra $5,000 added to the reward is coming from ATF and will be given for ghost guns and handguns with conversion devices.
Patterson said, “We know that 25 percent of all firearms and shell casings recovered in the District are ballistically linked to other shootings.”
Chief Contee said that with that statistic in mind, this push for more tips before the end of the year will help save lives. The additional reward from ATF will only be available through the end of the year, though MPD will continue the $2,500 reward in 2022.