App that alerts when law enforcement kills is stirring up contro - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

App that alerts when law enforcement kills is stirring up controversy

Amarillo, TX (KFDA) - Controversial information can now come easier to cell phone users across the U.S.

The phone app is very basic. And while easy to navigate, the information is presents is far from light.

It's called archives and absences.

The premise?

To inform downloaders whenever law enforcement kills someone in the U.S.

And many officers are not taking it lightly, especially considering the app only gives the name of the victim, and the location.

"It's going to allow for more social rumors, more social widespread anger and discontent with law enforcement. We're going to put out that an officer was involved in a shooting in wherever and so you're going to have people making comments and re-tweeting and posting and all this stuff before they even know what happened," says APD Cpl. Jerry Neufeld.

Civil rights lawyer Jeff Blackburn argues, however the app is a step toward more transparency, although he agrees there should be more background information included.

"I'd like to see one that provides real details so that people can get an idea on their own what patterns exist and what really occurs. That's probably a ways off, but I don't think it's that far off. I mean, everything that anybody ever wanted to know about anything is somewhere on the internet now," says Blackburn.

Neufeld says he is happy with the way the department currently handles officer-involved situations and does not see needed change.

"We have a process that we have to go through and that is to go to the grand jury," says Neufeld. "We're not going to open up everything right away, but we're going to send it through the proper and legal channels. Once that's done, we'll answer questions. We'll give people the information that they're asking for. It's not something that we've ever tried to hide or anything. I'm not sure exactly what this is going to accomplish in Amarillo."

"The more we know, the more we learn, the better off as citizens we become. That's what America's all about," says Blackburn.

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