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SJCSO: Tips via social media set dangerous precedent

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Updated: 11/26/2013 9:50 pm
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Social media is a growing trend across the U.S., and local law enforcement agencies are saying more people are using it to report crimes.

St. Johns County Sheriff deputies say this is setting a dangerous precedent for other tipsters.

"When we get those kind of requests we will respond and say call the communications center number, call a deputy to your home," said Mulligan.

Action News combed through the comments and found at least two cases that Mulligan says should've been calls to 911.

He says his staff are not monitoring social media 24-7, so those posts could go unnoticed for hours.

"In law enforcement, we still have to have a call for service come in through our communication center, stamp the call in the computer system for tracking purposes and be able to dispatch at the same time," said Mulligan.

Another risk, tipsters are putting all their information out there for everyone to see.

Action News asked Mulligan if he could ever see his office taking emergency requests using social media in the future, he said maybe if the technology is right, just not right anytime soon.

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