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Man says he will turn himself in if his mugshot gets 15K likes on Facebook


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TORRINGTON, Conn. — A most unusual way to track down a suspect: Facebook likes.

“Mr. Simms asked if his wanted poster was up, and he got 20,000 likes, he would turn himself in,” said Lt. Bart Barown of Torrington Police.

Jose Simms is wanted in Torrington for seven failures to appear in court.

After police posted mugshots of other wanted suspects on their Facebook page, Simms messaged them, offering to turn himself in for likes.

An officer negotiated him down from 20,000 to 15,000. As of Wednesday evening, he had gotten 19,000 likes but hadn’t yet turned himself in.

Now police are asking the public to help them out by liking the post.

“Social media, it reaches a lot of people very quickly, and we want to take full advantage of it,” said Barown.

Some Torrington residents say this is not the kind of post they want to interact with on their facebook feeds.”
“I’d probably keep scrolling. I don’t know. I probably wouldn’t pay attention to it,” said one.

“I guess I would like it if it would help,” said another.

Simms’ records vary from misdemeanor breach of peace and motor vehicle charges to risk of injury to a child.

Police could work to track him down based on computer forensics, but it would require resources usually used on more egregious cases.

“Hopefully we reach 15,000 likes, and he holds true to his word and turns himself in,” said Barown.