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CodeRED system leads to apprehension of alleged felon

The CodeRED system, a service of Emergency Communications Network, the leading provider of high-speed, mass notification solutions, was credited for the arrest of a Luray, VA suspect who is believed to be linked to more than 30 felonies.

In early December, a resident called the Luray Police Department to report suspicious activity near a neighbor’s car. This lead came shortly after more than 1,200 time-sensitive CodeRED messages were delivered to residents via phone, email, text and the CodeRED Mobile Alert app. The message asked residents to remain vigilant of an alleged suspect assumed to be accountable for several auto thefts.

“It took basically minutes to reach a thousand residents. Had we needed to go door to door to do that, it would have exhausted a lot of man hours,” Luray Assistant Police Chief, Wayne Petefish said.

Police apprehended the alleged robber moments after receiving information from a citizen about the suspect’s location. “Within a week, we received information from our citizens that led to the arrest of a person who is going to be charged with over 30 felonies that are now able to be closed by arrest because of the CodeRED system,” Petefish said.

The town of Luray is divided into 4 sections and all reports of an individual breaking into cars and stealing personal items came from the southern part of town. Therefore, when the Luray Police Department collaborated with Page County, VA to issue the CodeRED message, they made sure only those who may be directly impacted were notified.

“We used the drawing tool, allowing us to send a message to just the areas where the incidents were happening,” Page County’s Emergency Manager, Wes Shifflett said.

The CodeRED system has been operational in Page County for several years and has yielded similar, successful results throughout the years. “On multiple occasions we’ve had quite a few good outcomes from using the CodeRED system, not only in this case, but we’ve had good outcomes with emergency management and during storms,” Shifflett said.