Facebook Helps Nab Local Fugitives

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The Cuyahoga County sheriff's office is using social media to make northeast Ohio a safer place to live and work.

In January 2010, the sheriff's office launched a Facebook page that allows law enforcement to share pertinent information, including an entire section devoted to fugitives.

Since its launch, authorities have nabbed more than 1,000 fugitives.

Nearly two felons listed on the page per day have been taken into custody.

The sheriff's Facebook page features different felons each week.

The page averages 50,000 viewers per day.

The site also provides an email address and a phone number for anyone who wants to leave an anonymous tip.

"Somebody giving information to the police, that is privileged information, and actually doing it through a Facebook page or the Internet is actually a more secure way to do it," said Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald. "Our Facebook site gets a lot of hits on it, but that's just the way the world is working now."

FitzGerald said about 20 percent of the arrests come from Facebook tips.

"One of the things were trying to do in the county as a whole is get into the 21st century when it comes to technology. This is one way were doing it," FitzGerald explained.