Guam Crime Stoppers unveiled its Web site on Jan. 25 and kicked off a year of special events to celebrate 20 years of crime-fighting.

“These events range from celebratory to fund-raisers to improvements to the program ” said Philip Law chairman of Crime Stoppers. They include:

• The Web site has background information and Crime Stoppers statistics. Software is being developed to allow crime tips to be left anonymously through a reply on the Web site.

• The Safe Schools Program in conjunction with the Department of Education began this month in cooperation with the Guam Department of Education. Guam Crime Stoppers launched its program in 11 middle and high schools which will develop their own rewards determinations.

• 6th Annual McDonald’s Annual 5K Run Against Crime. About 825 runners assembled for the 6 a.m. starter’s gun near McDonald’s in Hagatna on Jan. 29. Runners competed for trophies and raffle prizes and Crime Stoppers raised $5 330 from entry fees and raffle sales

• Guam Crime Stoppers’ 20th Anniversary Gala Ball will be held in August to honor former board members coordinators and acknowledge support from news media sponsors and supporters.

• Other scheduled anniversary events include a golf tournament and a wine-and-cheese party at dates to be announced.

Guam Crime Stoppers announced details about these events and crime-tip statistics for 2004 in a press conference at the Guam Hilton Resort & Spa’s Art Gallery on Jan. 25.

Philip M. Dennis a board member of Crime Stoppers and Region 15 director for Crime Stoppers International said the number of tips and arrests for 2004 were up more than 50% the year before. “This shows that the public support for the program and the program recognition has increased in recent months. This will translate to a safer community for all of us ” Dennis said.

The Guam Crime Stoppers program is funded by public and corporate contributions. It has a civilian board of directors to oversee and administer the funds and to coordinate activities with law-enforcement agencies and media. It was established in 1985 as a non-profit corporation and typically has a police officer assigned as liaison for referring tips.

The program’s objectives are to furnish law-enforcement agencies with information about crimes wanted people and criminal activity that might otherwise not be obtainable.

Major corporate sponsors of Crime Stoppers include McDonald’s of Guam Triple J Enterprises Inc. Continental Airlines and Mobil Oil Guam.

Editor’s note: Stephen V. Nygard is vice chairman of Crime Stoppers Guam. MBJ