Facebook a new tool to solve crime

    A Montgomery County man is facing charges for using Facebook to post threats about shooting up a community. A tip led to the man’s arrest. Law enforcement officials say they rely on the public’s help in reporting online crime.

    A Montgomery County man is facing charges for using Facebook to post threats about shooting up a community. A tip led to the man’s arrest. Law enforcement officials say they rely on the public’s help in reporting online crime.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090914tmfacebook.mp3]

    Reisa Vetri Furman is Montgomery County District Attorney. She says the public needs to be the eyes and ears of law enforcement because there aren’t enough people to keep track of every area of communication.

    Furman: I think it would be impossible for any law enforcement agency to be trolling the internet for posts that seem threatening and many things can be misinterpreted not knowing the people have information and knowledge of people and not just the post themselves and have some indication of what’s going on.

    The Montgomery County man posted pictures with semi-automatic weapons and threats that he would use them to shoot up Springfield Township.

    Both the Philadelphia and Montgomery County D.A. say they are not routinely going on social networking sites looking for crime, but they welcome tips from the public.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.