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'Crimewatch'

May 23

The App an Entrepreneurial City Built

Posted to Fishers, Indiana on May 23, 2016 at 4:29 PM by Blog Admin

Last week, Fishers Police Department rolled out a new Crimewatch app that will allow residents to report suspicious activity to officers on patrol in real time. The app was the brainchild of FPD’s Captain Ed Gebhart.

At a roll call meeting, Gebhart noticed nearly all of the officers in the room were captivated by their smartphones. Over time, he’s also realized a hesitation from Fishers’ younger residents to report suspicious activity via 9-1-1.

 “I walked over to Launch Fishers because I know businesses and ideas launch from there,” said Gebhart.

Gebhart shared his ideas for a crime watch app with a group of tech professionals at Launch Fishers, where he met local app developer, Auri Rahimzadeh. Rahimzadeh took interest in the app and followed up with Gebhart to meet at Starbucks to talk more about the idea.

Gebhart told Rahimzadeh that he wanted to increase the department’s communication with the community. He was also interested in improving officer’s response times. Rahimzadeh brought his own ideas for the app to the table as well.

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Countless Starbucks meetings later, the two had an app that was ready for beta testing.

“Auri would build, build, build and then throw it to me for feedback,” Gebhart said. “Then we brought in officers to help us test it.”

The app is an innovative way to connect officers with engaged residents through smartphones; a tool both are already using as their preferred method of communication. At the time of rollout, Gebhart reported that the app was the first of its kind. The app is already in use and can be downloaded on iOS and Android devices at here.

What does it mean to be an entrepreneurial city? The development of the Crimewatch app is a prime example; to collaborate to create innovative solutions that will ultimately make our community an even better place to live, work and play.