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Police encourage people to use new tool that helps them find stolen items

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COLUMBUS, Ind. - Investigators in Columbus are urging people to use a new tool that could help them retrieve stolen items.

When valuables are stolen, police often ask victims to provide the corresponding serial numbers. But not everyone is good about recording those details.

That's why Columbus police are now urging residents to sign up for a free service called ReportIt. It's an online database provided by LeadsOnline, a company they already work with.

"A lot of times people may own a firearm, but they don’t even remember what kind of sling they may have had on it," said Lt. Tom Foust.

ReportIt allows you to store details about your valuables on a secure account online. You can put in serial numbers, descriptions and pictures.

"I have a whole lot better picture or idea of what I’m looking for versus that small description the individual is able to give me," Foust explained.

It can also come in handy, he said, with items that don't come with serial numbers, like jewelry. Investigators do not have access to your account unless you share it with them.

"If this were used a lot more, utilized, I think people would find that they have a much higher chance of getting their property recovered, and/or catching the individuals responsible."

To sign up for ReportIt for free, click here.