Boone County, Indiana Sheriff's Office - Sheriff Mike Nielsen

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Why did they send the police even when I called back and told them everything was okay?

These are examples of some of the reports that the police respond to that will not be cancelled by telephone:

 

·         Domestic violence

·         Child or adult abuse

·         Robbery calls

·         Certain types of alarms

·         Molestation or rape

·         911 hang-ups

 

These calls are rarely cancelled even if you call back to tell us everything is fine.  The reasoning behind this action is because a victim can sometimes be easily coerced into sounding convincing while telling the Dispatcher that everything is okay.  Some situations require the physical presence of the police to verify that everyone is safe and that peace has been restored.

Q2. What type of activity should I report?

Any type of criminal or suspicious activity should be reported.  When calling 765-482-1412 for non-emergency situations or 9-1-1 for emergencies, please be specific.  We need to know what activity you have observed and what causes you to believe the situation is criminal or suspicious.  Please try to provide as much information as possible, such as vehicle descriptions, clothing and physical descriptions of suspicious persons, and good location information where the activity is occurring.

 

Examples of suspicious activity can include, but are not limited to:

 

·         Someone looking over fences

·         Someone trying to break into a residence or vehicle

·         Drug activity

·         Shots heard

·         Suspicious vehicles that are unfamiliar to the area

 

Often times it is difficult to determine what types of suspicious activity or people should be reported to the police.  When in doubt, call 9-1-1.

Q3. Why does it sometimes take so long for an officer to respond to my call?

Calls are triaged based on the type of activity or urgency.  Incidents posing an immediate threat to life, where the threat is present and ongoing and/or an incident posing an immediate threat to life that involves the actual use or threatened use of a weapon, will get a high-level priority response.  This also includes crimes against persons or significant property crimes where a rapid response is needed and the incident is in progress, just occurred with the possibility of apprehending a suspect, or the incident is about to escalate to a more serious situation.

 

What does this mean?  Matters that do not involve immediate threat to life or do not have the potential to escalate to a serious incident may experience an extended wait, depending upon the call load and number of current emergencies.  Non-emergency events that are not necessarily time critical, but do require response from a police officer, may have to wait for an extended period of time.

Q4. Why won't the Dispatcher give me any information about an on-going situation?

Often, situations are still in progress when citizens call to find out what is happening in their neighborhoods.  Dispatchers are rarely apprised of specific details.  Furthermore, the situation you are inquiring about may be sensitive in nature and details cannot be made available to you.

Q5. What is the non-emergency telephone number for the Communications Center?

765-482-1412, Option 8

Q6. What is SMART911©?

Smart911 allows citizens to provide the additional details that 9-1-1 call takers may need to assist them during an emergency.  When you dial 9-1-1 today, the information received by the 9-1-1 call center can be limited, based on the type of phone from which you are calling.  With Smart911, anytime you make an emergency call from a phone registered with your Safety Profile, the 9-1-1 system recognizes your phone number and automatically displays your profile on the screen of the call taker who receives your call.

 

At a time when you may be panicked, or unable to communicate, or it could be unsafe to communicate, Smart911 ensures that the details you would need to tell 9-1-1 are immediately available in the event you cannot verbally provide them.  Smart911 is free, private, and secure

To create a free Smart911 safety profile simply go to www.smart911.com

Q7. Why should I use Smart911?

Smart911 can help protect you, your loved ones, and other members of your household.  By creating a Safety Profile with Smart911 during a calm moment, you can take the time to ensure that the information is correct and accurate and exactly what you would like to be communicated to emergency response teams in an emergency.  Smart911 is free to all citizens.  It also allows you to receive important email/text alerts regarding weather, school, community, and road closures.

 

To create a free Smart911 safety profile simply go to www.smart911.com

Q8. Can I send a text to 9-1-1?

Yes.  All 92 counties in Indiana can receive/respond to texts in their 9-1-1 Centers.

Q9. How do I text to 9-1-1?

Find the message or messaging icon or menu choice on your phone.  Do not use a text app you downloaded.  Select 'create a new text message'.  Put 911 in the “To:” field.  Put your emergency and your location in the message body.  Do not attach or send pictures or videos.  Keep your message short and do not use abbreviations.  After you enter your text, press send.

 

The 9-1-1 center will reply within 20 seconds to one minute.

 

Continue your dialog with the 9-1-1 center, and follow their instructions.

Q10. When do I text to 9-1-1?

Make a voice call when you can.  Text if you can't make a voice call, or if a voice call would put you in danger.  Text-to-911 is not as fast as making a voice call.  Your location is extremely important information to provide.  The 9-1-1 center may ask you to make a voice call if you don't know your location

Q11. What else do I need to know about texting?

Your phone must be able to send a text message. You can find out by texting a friend or family member to be certain.

 

Text-to-911 is not a priority service.  It can be delayed.  You can't send more than 160 characters.

 

Tom Garoffolo

911 Administrator

1905 Indianapolis Ave

Lebanon, IN 46052

765-483-3368tgaroffolo@co.boone.in.us

Office Hours

Monday - Friday

8am - 4pm

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