South Texas City to Offer Police Alerts via E-Mail

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CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) - Residents in Corpus Christi soon will need only to check their e-mail to get police-related news such as breaking-crime and missing-person alerts.

The Corpus Christi Police Department is finalizing a program that will send free alerts via e-mail to anyone who signs up for the service.

Chief Bryan Smith says the alerts can be customized for residents and eventually businesses such as banks or retailers.

The department estimates the program, to be run by a private business, to cost about $4,500 a year.

It's expected to become available in late December.

Police also are close to starting another Web-based service where residents will be able to file police reports instead of having to wait for an officer to respond or call in the incident to the department's reporting unit.

The service likely will be limited to less-serious incidents such as simple assault, forgery and vandalism.