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Tampa Bay human trafficking task force launches tip app

Users can submit anonymous tips to the task force, which is run by the St. Petersburg Police Department and includes agencies from Manatee to Polk counties.

ST. PETERSBURG — A regional task force devoted to investigating human trafficking launched an app where users can submit tips.

The Tampa Bay Human Trafficking Task Force app allows users to submit tips anonymously and is free in both the Apple and Google Play app stores, St. Petersburg police Chief Anthony Holloway said Monday during a news conference.

“We wanted to make sure that our victims had a way to contact us, and also that our people that were witnessing some type of human trafficking,” said Holloway, whose agency was tasked with creating the task force via a roughly $741,600 grant from the Department of Justice.

Related: St. Pete police to lead Tampa Bay human trafficking task force

Anyone with information can also send a tip by texting HTTF to tip411 along with the information.

Since the task force formed in January, member agencies have opened 107 investigations into sex trafficking and arrested 34 people, Holloway said. Agencies have also opened seven investigations into labor trafficking.

Departments participating in the task force include the Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco and Hernando sheriff’s offices and the Clearwater, Largo, Tampa, Zephyrhills and Dade City police departments.

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