Chattanooga police launch mobile app as part of effort to build transparency

Chattanooga police car tile

The Chattanooga Police Department launched a new mobile app intended to help the community stay safe and informed.

Part of its efforts to continue building a transparent relationship with the community, the department said its new app will make it easier for citizens to stay alert on incidents within a few hundred feet of their location, as well as communicate with police and submit any anonymous tips.

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Lt. Daniel Francis, commander of the department's technology unit, spearheaded the program.

"Transparency is a key element in building trust and fostering a healthy relationship with the community we serve, and this app helps CPD do that," Francis said in a news release.

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Francis and his unit have been working on the app for a year. It will use geofencing, a location-based service in which an app or other software program uses radio frequency identification, Wi-Fi, GPS or cellular data to trigger a targeted action, such as a text, email or app notification, when a mobile device or radio frequency identification tag enters or exits a virtual geographic boundary, to alert users of what's happening in that area.

The app launched Tuesday.

Alerts from the department will be sent to app users from the city, and those users from other municipalities will get notifications as they visit Chattanooga.

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The app is ready to download on both Android and iOS platforms.