Champaign County Crime Stoppers unveils 'Gun Bounty Reward' initiative

Champaign County Crime Stoppers unveils 'Gun Bounty Reward' initiative

After the slew of recent shootings, Champaign County Crime Stoppers is upping the ante for people who give information regarding gun-related crimes.

In what they're calling a "Gun Bounty Reward," anyone who provides Crime Stoppers with information leading to the arrest of a person who used a gun during the crime will receive $1,000.

"A shooting incident will occur, the police will go out and sweep the neighborhood, and no one allegedly knows anything," said John Hecker, president of the organization's board. "We're very hopeful that this program that we're announcing today will provide the incentive for individuals to come forward anonymously — I want to underscore that, because we've gone to great lengths to assure the anonymity to provide that information to law enforcement personnel."

In 2018, seven people were killed by guns in Champaign, and two were killed in Urbana.

"You have statements from victims and statements from witnesses and statements from suspects and the crime-scene physical evidence," said Bryant Seraphin, interim police chief in Urbana. "Those are the four building blocks, and this initiative helps us build that block of witness information."

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