District attorney, sheriff introduces app to protect victims of crime in Lee County

District attorney, sheriff introduces app to protect victims of crime in Lee County
A new program is allowing the public to stay aware of the status of an offender booked inside the Lee County Jail.

LEE COUNTY, AL (WTVM) - In East Alabama, a local district attorney along with law enforcement is teaming up to further protect victims of crime.

A new program is allowing the public to stay aware of the status of an offender booked inside the Lee County Jail.

"We get a lot of requests from crime victims, particularly victims of violent crime, that they want to be able to keep up with where their offender is. Once they are arrested they would like to know if this person makes bond or gets released from jail," said Lee County District Attorney Brandon Hughes.

Hughes said his office prosecutes over 1,600 felony cases a year and with two victim resource officers on staff,  he wanted to take an extra step forward by providing a free resource to protect victims of crime.

"Anybody can go in through an app or online and find a particular offender they are interested in," said Hughes.

The VINELink APP, known as Victim Information & Notification Everyday, provides  "near real-time" updates on the status of offenders in the Lee County Jail and other Alabama Detention Facilities.

"If you're a victim, you want to know those things," said Sheriff Jay Jones. "It's just one more thing that helps victims of crime to be aware of circumstances surrounding the misfortune they've had."

With the click of a button, you can go to the app store and download "VINELink." Once it's downloaded and you select your state, you can search for an offender along with other options.

Just type in the first and last name or offender ID and you can customize notifications to keep you aware of offender status.

The sheriff's office says their software coordinates with the vine system to access public information and release the notifications of offender status as needed.

"It took some initiative on our part and the sheriff's office's part to say this is something we want to provide to Lee County," said Hughes.

To download the app, visit this site https://leecountyda.org/resources/vinelink/.

Copyright 2018 WTVM. All rights reserved.