Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls launching animal cruelty division

Torin Halsey and

Trish Choate, Wichita Falls Times Record News
Published 6:49 p.m. CT Dec. 20, 2019

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Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls will soon be looking to residents to speak up for those who can’t speak up for themselves.

Crime Stoppers is launching a new Animal Cruelty Division as of Jan. 1 to take tips on crimes against animals and offer rewards for help solving them.

“We want to live in a community that is compassionate and cruelty free, especially against animals,” Leslie Harrelson, who is heading up the new division, said.

Among those aiding Harrelson with the new initiative will be city of Wichita Falls animal control officer and kennel coordinator Amanda Pfeffer. 

“Animal Services is excited about this,” Pfeffer said. “We still will be available with all of our regular services that we provide. This is just an extra avenue to report these types of animal cruelty.”

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Leslie Harrelson holds Nala, a formerly abused dog, while talking with Animal Control officer Amanda Pfeffer, Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls Board Vice President David Yonts and Wichita Falls Police officer and Crime Stoppers coordinator Brian Bohn about the newly formed Crime Stoppers Animal Cruelty division. Harrelson will be heading up the new division. (Photo: TORIN HALSEY/TIMES RECORD NEWS)

Wichita Falls police officer and Crime Stoppers coordinator Brian Bohn said Crime Stoppers programs across the nation are adding animal control programs. 

“We’re talking about animals that are being abused or being tortured, dog fighting rings,” Bohn said. 

“If they see that, we’re asking them to call Crime Stoppers at 322-9888, and help us put an end to this animal cruelty that we’re seeing in the community,” he said.

The new initiative is the brainchild of Dave Yonts, vice president of the Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls Board.

“We have a problem with cruelty to animals,” Yonts said in an interview earlier this year.

Yonts came back with the idea of an animal cruelty division after attending the 2019 Crime Stoppers USA Training Conference in late September in Tempe, Arizona.

He met another official who was having great success with an animal cruelty division he rolled out about two years ago, Yonts said. 

If you have information about any felony crime — and any incident of animal cruelty beginning Jan. 1 — you can call (940) 322-9888, 24 hours a day

The number for long distance callers is (800) 322-9888. Callers never have to give their names. 

You can also submit tips online at www.wfcrime.com. 

Residents can download the P3 Intel app to their Apple and Android phones to provide tips to the authorities on fugitives and crimes.  

The multi-lingual tip app allows the public to submit secure and anonymous tips to Crime Stoppers programs and law-enforcement agencies, according to Crime Stoppers of Wichita Falls. 

An ongoing two-way dialogue, as well as image and video uploads, are doable with P3 Intel. 

The app shows wanted fugitives, missing persons and unsolved crimes. Tips can be submitted easily on each of them.

P3 Intel also supports Silent Observer and Silent Witness programs.

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