East TN man creates neighborhood watch app

June 20, 2017: An East Tennessee man has created a mobile app for neighborhoods to share information about crime in their communities.

As online neighborhood watch groups are taking off on Facebook, an East Tennessee man created an app to organize all of the information in one place. 

Raymond Proctor started designing the East Tennessee Neighborhood Watch app as a part of a project for grad school. 

His inspiration behind the app came from seeing people post in Facebook groups like "Knoxville Crime" and similar groups in other counties.

"I'm hoping that people can be able to help each other out more," Proctor said. "Be able to alert others and say 'hey, there's a robbery here or my stuff's been stolen, have you seen it?'" 

The app allows people to post what's going on in their neighborhood, listen to live scanners, receive emergency alerts, check local weather and more. 

"I'm hoping it will help the police in a way like for a community to come together and be able to talk to each other and be able to inform them as well," Proctor said.

Knoxville neighborhood coordinator David Massey said the way communities talk to each other is changing.

"With email, Facebook, the web, Twitter, all kinds of social media - it's much easier for us to communicate," Massey said.

The Office of Neighborhoods still sends out weekly newsletters to neighborhood organizations and makes sure that people who don't have internet or email are informed.  

Massey says the Office of Neighborhoods uses a messaging service to contact people in an emergency, but they still encourage groups to talk in person. 
 
"We always go back and say it's important to do that person-to-person, eye-to-eye kind of communication," Massey said. 
 
To sign up for the emergency alerts through the Office of Neighborhoods, Massey said to call 215-3232 for more information. 
 
Proctor's app will be available July 15 through Google and Apple for people to download. 

© 2017 WBIR.COM


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