Denton Police's Mug Shot Facebook Posts Lead to Arrests

27th arrest made thanks to weekly "Facebook Most Wanted" postings

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Denton Police Department nabbed one of its "Most Wanted" less than two hours after asking the public for help on its social media channels. (Published Monday, Jul 8, 2013)

    Denton police have made their 27th "most wanted" arrest via their Facebook page.

    Officers on Monday arrested James Moses, 26, on an outstanding property theft between $50 and $500 warrant.

    He was in the Denton jail only about two hours after his mug shot was posted on the police department's Facebook page.

    Police spokesman Ryan Grelle, who updates the page, credits Denton and Denton County citizens with the results the department has seen for the program.

    Grelle first began posting mug shots on Facebook two years ago in hopes of closing some of the department's outstanding warrants.

    "We're talking about ... shoplifting anywhere over $50 on up to murder and things like that," he said.

    Now, it's a weekly tradition to post several misdemeanor and felony suspects on Monday mornings in hopes of getting the public's help in tracking them down. People on Facebook can look at the pictures and send private messages with tips if they know a suspect, Grelle said.

    Denton police don't like to try and rank which suspects are more wanted than others, so they simply post a handful each week, he said.

    Police have received some negative feedback, especially when it comes to possession of marijuana in small amounts, Grelle said. Comments under such pictures often say that posting such crimes on Facebook is overkill.

    But Grelle stands by the mug shot posts.

    "It is still a crime," he said. "It's illegal in the state of Texas and until the state of Texas makes marijuana legal to possess, those people are going to go up."

    In addition to the 27 arrests to date, Denton police have also received countless tips via Facebook that have helped investigators in many different cases, Grelle said.

    More: City of Denton Police Department Facebook page