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Nixle in action: Blount County – returning the escaped

In the rare, but possible, event that an inmate manages to escape from prison, the impact on the community and surrounding area can be severe. But, did you know that many communities have used Nixle Community Engagement to alert residents and solicit their aid in keeping their eyes out for the escapee.

In Blount County, for example, an inmate escaped the facility on a Saturday evening. The Blount County Sheriff’s Department sent out an alert that evening alerting residents of the potential danger and also asking for their help in the search. The message also warned residents to not approach the inmate but to call law enforcement immediately if they had any information about the escaped inmate. By early Sunday morning, the inmate was captured and returned to jail. [1]

After receiving the Nixle alert, 911 received nine calls with information on the escapee. The 911 Center director, Caleb Branch, agrees that Nixle is “a great community resource to notify people of important news developments in the county”[2]. The success of the Nixle alert shows that it does help to have the community serve as your resource during similar incidents.

Along with the quick and positive outcome of this incident, Branch saw an increase in Nixle subscribers after the incident.. On average, Blount County receives about 2-3 new subscribers per day. After the escaped inmate was captured, they received 427 new Nixle subscribers.

A similar situation happened in Ripley County. During booking, an inmate fled and a nine-hour search ensued. The Ripley County Sheriff’s Office reached out to the public for help, through a Nixle message. [3] With the aid of the Indiana State Police and the public, they were able to recapture the inmate and bring him back to jail. Nixle is able to extend the eyes and ears of the police force by allowing residents to easily share information with law enforcement, as well as provide means for law enforcement to keep residents informed on important or dangerous situations. The more subscribers a community has, the higher the likelihood they will contribute helping keep their neighborhood safe.

Residents can easily sign up for their local Nixle alerts by texting their zip code to 888-777!




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