ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Is social media the best way to alert the community about a crime that happened to you? Albuquerque police say they would rather hear about it before you post.
Clay Schroff said his daughters were in their car at Paseo and Golf Course when a man exposed himself to them.
“She looked over as they were rolling down the window, and of course the person was being very inappropriate,” Schroff said. “My daughter immediately pulled over to the far left lane, took a picture of the automobile and called me.”
Schroff posted the picture on Facebook. He said he didn’t go to the police because he felt like he didn’t have enough evidence to report it.
That Facebook post quickly went viral.
KRQE News 13 is not showing the post because we can’t confirm the details of what happened, but many people were quick to share the post, some even giving information about unique features on the vehicle.
While the Albuquerque Police Department said social media posts like Schroff’s can be helpful, officers say there is a downside to posting on social media immediately instead of reporting a crime like this to police.
“Once the video is made public like that, we can’t really use it for any evidence in court because now it’s public to everybody and everybody’s seen it,” Officer Fred Duran said.
Plus, it doesn’t give police any time to validate the claim.
“We know it’s getting a lot of attention on social media, but at the same time we never have the opportunity to investigate it and look into it,” Officer Duran said.
Schroff agrees, and said if he had to do it over, he would contact police first.
“You got to get it on tape, you got to so that police have something to follow up with. The police do an awesome job and that’s probably the first call we should’ve made,” Schroff said.
APD said they do get a good amount of calls about people being inappropriate in public. They say you should report it each time.