We are at the Seattle Police Department‘s West Precinct, where SPD has just officially announced its Twitter account to find stolen cars – @getyourcarback. More after the briefing.
(Added Wednesday night – unedited video of the entire briefing)
2:45 PM UPDATE: After the briefing, media reps were ushered up to the 911 center to see 27-year SPD veteran communications supervisor Gary Raymond send out the first two tweets (that’s him in the photo above, added 2:56 pm). They will NOT include location information – media unit Sgt. Sean Whitcomb says that could dissuade people from being on the lookout, since a stolen vehicle could be taken far outside the theft area fairly quickly. The full news release announcing the program is on SPD Blotter. We’ll add the stream of tweets to the WSB Crime Watch page as soon as possible, so you can check them even if you don’t want to use Twitter. SPD says that if this works out, they’ll consider expanding their use of Twitter – it could provide instant information on a host of situations, including road closures resulting from police-involved incidents. Until now, the only tweeting that SPD was doing came from the media unit via @SeattlePD – usually links to SPD Blotter reports, with the occasional breaking-news note. The stolen-car tweets will NOT be repeated on @SeattlePD – so if you want to get them from Twitter, you need to follow @getyourcarback. 2 more notes: They will not tweet when a car’s been found – if you see one you saw on Twitter, just go ahead and call 911; if it turns out it’s no longer listed as stolen, they’ll be able to tell. And do not tweet back with information about sightings – CALL 911.