DOVER – Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) has launched a new law enforcement app, enabling the public to connect with the department’s Natural Resources Police officers, receive alerts, and submit anonymous tips from their smartphones.
“Technology is playing an ever-increasing role in the ways we communicate, and this new Natural Resources Police app offers the public an easy electronic means of reporting crimes and concerns,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “The app also gives our Natural Resources Police officers an efficient new tool to gather tips and share information and alerts with app users.”
Developed by software company tip411, the Delaware Natural Resources Police (DENRP) app encourages the public to provide DNREC’s Natural Resources Police (NRP) with factual and anonymously reported information leading to the arrest of poachers, polluters, and other violators. The app is available for free download by searching “DENRP” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. The app can be used with 100 percent anonymity, as tip411’s technology removes all identifying information before NRP officers see the tips.
Delaware’s tip411 system enables the public to connect with the three branches of DNREC’s natural resources police to report crimes and hazards to public safety. In addition to enforcing all Delaware criminal and motor vehicle laws as do all Delaware police agencies, DNREC’s three law enforcement branches focus on specific enforcement areas:
· Environmental Crimes Unit Natural Resources Police – text keyword ECUTIP
The Environmental Crimes Unit (ECU) investigates environmental violations, primarily focusing on unlawful releases of liquid, solid, and hazardous waste, and air pollution violations. Common complaints include illegal dumping, open burning violations, unlawful asbestos removal, illegal transportation of solid or hazardous waste, and water quality violations for wells, failing septic systems, and illegal disposal of wastewater. The ECU also has a K-9 tracking unit.
· Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police – text keyword FWTIP
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, including two K-9 tracking units, investigate hunting, fishing, and boating violations; respond to and investigate boating and hunting accidents; respond to poaching complaints through Operation Game Theft; and patrol state-owned boating access areas, fishing ponds and piers, and 19 state wildlife areas encompassing nearly 65,000 acres statewide. F&W NRP officers also conduct marine law enforcement patrols and boating safety checks on Delaware waterways, including the state’s three-mile offshore limit in the Atlantic Ocean.
· State Parks Enforcement Natural Resources Police – text keyword STATEPARKTIP
Delaware’s Park Rangers patrol 16 state parks encompassing more than 26,000 acres. Rangers enforce park rules and regulations such as surf fishing regulations, campground policies, trespassing in restricted areas, and hunting, fishing, and boating on state parks properties. Rangers also respond to and investigate visitor injuries, motor vehicle accidents and all other crimes and offenses occurring in or near Delaware’s state parks. Alerts including park closings, special event notifications, and weather advisories also will be available through the tip411 app.
Anyone without a smartphone can send an anonymous text tip via their cell phone to Delaware Natural Resources Police officers by texting the appropriate NRP section keyword as listed above and their message/tip to 847411 (tip411). For more information on the new app, visit https://dnrec.alpha.delaware.gov/tip-411.
Tip411 users also are advised that DNREC’s new app does not take the place of dialing 911 for immediate emergency response. In the event of an emergency situation, call 911.
To report possible crimes, DNREC’s Natural Resources Police also can be reached by phone:
· Environmental Crimes Unit Natural Resources Police: 24-hour Environmental Emergency Response Line, 800-662-8802
· Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police: Illegal hunting, fishing, or boating activities, 800-523-3336; Operation Game Theft (wildlife crimes): 800-292-3030
· State Parks Enforcement Natural Resources Police: 24-hour dispatch, 302-739-4580