On October 12, Phillip Roar, a 39-year old Kentucky state inmate decided to escape the work crew he was on. He managed to get away, setting off an all night manhunt by Bath county Jailer Earl Willis and others. Fortunately, he was captured the next day and returned to custody.
Key to his re-capture were the many tips provided by the community, tips that were solicited by Bath County Emergency Management, with the help of the Hyper-Reach system, which sent voi
ce and text messages to over 4,000 telephone numbers, email addresses and the county’s Emergency Management Facebook account. The original message asking for help included both a physical description of Mr. Roar, as well as his picture, using Hyper-Reach’s ImageReach™ picture messaging system. The Facebook post was shared more than 350 people, including the local newspaper Bath County News Outlook, resulting in more posts throughout Facebook and other social media.
This event is a great case study for the power of an integrated mass emergency notification system, such as Hyper-Reach. The Emergency Management agency was able to send the message as a voice, text, email and social media post with a single set of actions and just clicking the different delivery methods they wanted to use. Every recipient of the message was able to retrieve the image of the escapee, regardless of how they got the original message. And the easy integration of Facebook made it simple for the message to appear on the county EM’s Facebook page, where it was shared by hundreds – and possibly thousands – of other people.