Screenshot of the new app, fea­turing quick links to sim­plify how res­i­dents access department infor­mation. Kaylee McGhee | Col­legian

In order to increase effective com­mu­ni­cation between law enforcement and the com­munity, the Hillsdale County Sheriff’s Office has released its newest safety feature — its own app.

The app, which includes a weather feature, a link to submit tips, contact infor­mation, and imme­diate push alerts, will give the com­munity instan­ta­neous access to local hap­penings.

“Society is changing around us,” Sheriff Tim Parker said. “How we com­mu­nicate is changing as well. The intent of this app is effective com­mu­ni­cation with the public.”

Parker said the app will make it easier for the HCSO to com­mu­nicate directly with res­i­dents, college stu­dents, and even stu­dents’ parents.

“The Sheriff’s Office now has the ability to timely, quickly, and effi­ciently send out infor­mation,” Parker said.

The app also allows the public to get into contact with the HCSO. Through the tip sub­mission link, res­i­dents can upload pic­tures and other anonymous infor­mation if they come across illegal activ­ities or persons, according to Lt. Todd Moore.

“It’s pretty cool to see how the app has already had a good effect,” Moore, who spear­headed the orga­ni­zation of the app’s content, said. “We’ve already gotten several tips, which is good because it allows us to take care of all people’s con­cerns.”

The HCSO is the first Sheriff in Michigan to open its own app through, an expe­ri­enced team of devel­opers spe­cial­izing in custom app devel­opment for Sheriff’s Offices and other branches of law enforcement.

The devel­opment of the new app has been in the works since December, according to Parker, and Moore said it has already drawn attention from outside Hillsdale County.

“A huge agency in Michigan heard about our app and wants to get it,” he said. “They’re even giving a pre­sen­tation on it.”

Parker said the app is one way the HCSO wants to utilize tech­nology to promote the safety of the public.

“I am so proud to kick it off and make it available to our com­munity,” Parker said. “Our goal is for every student, parent, pro­fessor, and res­ident to download this app.”

The HCSO’s new app is available for download in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.