CrimeReports.com enables the Hazelwood Police Department to publish local crime incident information to the Internet in near real-time, making raw crime data easily accessible and user-friendly to people. By using CrimeReports.com, Hazelwood residents can view crime information from multiple jurisdictions where they both live and work in one convenient, easy-to-use location. The published information is presented through a Google Maps interface where residents can review up-to-date crime activity for any location within the police department’s jurisdiction.
“This program allows Hazelwood residents to see what kind of crime activity is going on in their community,” said Sgt. Don Routh, N.A.T. Supervisor/Volunteer Coordinator, Hazelwood Police Department. “Although areas within the Hazelwood city limits are safe and have a relatively low crime rate, the website empowers residents with a useful tool to monitor their neighborhoods and gain a greater sense of security in the purchase or lease of a home in Hazelwood.”
An unfiltered report of the calls for service to the police department can be retrieved by keying in specific street address information or zip code area. “The calls show up on the report according to the original crime classification given. For instance, if a dispatcher receives a call about a robbery, it would be classified as such by CrimeReports.com. However, if an investigation determines the need to reclassify a crime, the website won’t be able to provide these updates,” he explained.
Crime data is downloaded from the police department’s servers on a daily basis. “This means residents won’t be able to go online and immediately check on what a call is about if they see a police officer show up on their street. They would have to wait up to 24 hours to see the results,” added Routh.
The Hazelwood Police Department believes keeping the public informed helps law enforcement officers do their jobs better. Increasing public awareness of crime activity in local neighborhoods is the best deterrent to preventing the unscrupulous actions of others.