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Hundreds have submitted tips in search for Dontae Morris

12:27 AM, Jul 3, 2010   |    comments
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Hillsborough County, Florida - Tampa police say in four days they've already followed up on 400 leads in the search for Dontae Morris.

Morris is suspected of killing two Tampa police officers on Tuesday.

Photo gallery: Two Tampa Police officers shot and killed

With a record-high reward of $101,000 on the line, Crimestoppers of Tampa Bay has received nearly as many tips in three days as they usually do in an entire month.

"This is the largest amount of call volume and tip volume that our program has ever seen in 22 years," said Deputy Lisa Haber with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, who oversees the program.

No matter how big or small, police say they have no choice but to take every single one seriously.

That's why you'll continue to see chaotic scenes on neighborhood streets, including SWAT teams and officers with weapons drawn, like we have in recent days.

"We're going to follow through on any information that comes in until it's proven incorrect," said Tampa police Chief Jane Castor.

One problem Crimestoppers is running into, though, is people calling in random sightings of Dontae Morris, but not picking up the phone until up to 24 hours after they claim to have seen him.

"Which, unfortunately, because of the time delay, is not much law enforcement can do to act upon those," Haber explained.

Police are asking for more detailed tips, like a license plate number, a specific address, or the names of people helping Morris hide.

"The reward is real and it's out there for whoever can turn in Dontae Morris," Chief Castor said.

The number to call in a tip is 1-800-873-TIPS.

Adam Freeman, 10 Connects

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