Cedar Rapids crime map shows how safe neighborhoods really are
Written by Justin Andrews, Multimedia Reporter - bio | email
A new, constantly-updated crime map for Cedar Rapids is now available.
CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -
Mapping and finding patterns of crime, it's something police departments have used to help prevent, reduce and solve crime for years.
Cedar Rapids is rolling it out to the public, in hopes of reducing what seems to be an increasing crime rate in the city.
Police Chief Wayne Jerman says they've been keeping track of crime trends for many years with their police logs.
The city has taken that information, placed it on an interactive map for the public to know what's going on in their neighborhoods.
"Where is the crime and how do I not know about it," asked Alyshia Hamilton, who lives close to downtown. "If I know what's going on around me I don't feel as safe, and if I don't know about it I feel safer."
Hamilton was surprised when we showed her the new interactive maps.
She browsed through crime information happening right in her area, and it showed an assault, theft, and a registered sex offender all within blocks of her home.
"Assaults and theft, but that's up everywhere, so I guess it's OK, but I prefer it not around or not as much in my neighborhood."
The maps are updated from the dispatch center each day.
They show the type of crime, when it happened, the locations and you can even submit an anonymous tip.
"It allows everybody who has access to the web to drill down into their street to see exactly what is happening on their street in their neighborhood," said Cedar Rapids Police Chief Wayne Jerman.
Jerman says the new tool allows residents to submit tips, encouraging community involvement in the policing process, helping to make Cedar Rapids a safe community.
"Being a technologist, I would say that the value of this is information and data, the more information that people get the, more informed they are, the better citizens they are," said Nic Roberts, Chief Information Officer for Cedar Rapids.
Jerman says the maps will not negatively impact perceptions of certain neighborhoods in Cedar Rapids because the data is accurate and timely.
"I'd have to say yes, because it lets you know the various stuff that's happening around you, so you can kind of keep a look out," said Hamilton.
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