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Bothell and Kenmore join new tracking program
Bothell and Kenmore citizens can now utilize a new website aimed at protecting them against theft.
TrackMole is a new web-based, serial-number database. The database is accessible by police agencies and individuals and is designed to allow property owners, those who find an item, and police to track serial numbers. Bothell Police Department and the King County Sheriff's Office, which serves Kenmore, is now utilizing Trackmole.
It was created by Renton police officer Shawn Tierney who says that through the use of TrackMole, an agency who finds an item can simply run its serial number. If the owner has registered the item, they will receive an immediate email informing them the serial number of one of their things has been searched, which could tip them that they’ve forgotten it and head back to security before their computer winds up in a pile with others.
“TrackMole allows the property to find the people,” Tierney said.
Kenmore and Bothell now joined with the cities of Auburn, Renton, Federal Way, Kent and Tukwila to partner with TrackMole, providing a new way for police to return property to individuals.
Police agencies in Renton, Tukwila, Kent, Federal Way and Auburn have pledged to use the system. The City of Renton says its committed to put all city operated equipment into the TrackMole database. Teirney says the free service will be supported by web based ads and eventually a premium service that will offer pictures.
According to the release, the largest crime law enforcement deals with by far is "Property Crime" which is an epidemic world wide. The disconnect between the property owner and law enforcement has allowed criminals to maintain possession of stolen property and forces police to return known stolen property seized by way of warrants back to the criminal.
Estimates show less than five percent of owners record serial number of their property, which is the main identifier police use to locate and return stolen or lost property to its rightful owner, according to Tierney.
To succeed, TrackMole will need public and police participation. Users can create a free account on TrackMole.com and register items of value with their serial numbers. Keeping a log of important possessions is something insurance companies have been advocating for years. TrackMole's online tool essentially does just that.
User's just need to provide a name and a valid email address. Police agencies that recover stolen or lost property could contact the owner quickly if the items were registered on TrackMole.com. Police can message the owner as soon as the items are recovered. It could also provide valuable evidence to a police at the scene of a theft.
Teirney says the website will not sell its information to third parties and there are protocols in place protecting users from being spammed by people claiming to have found lost equipment.
To register property, visit trackmole.com. For more information on the program, visit www.rentonwa.gov.