Police to offer crime maps
Laura Giles and Cathy Allred – North County Staff
Think your neighborhood is safe from crime?
Now you can check online and find out. Lehi City Police are tracking crime in a public-friendly format on the Internet at www.crimereports.com.
Endorsed by Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, the program is designed to give information to citizens and to use as a crime watch tool.
“I think it's great for the community,” said Lehi Police Sgt. Sean Farrell. “It's a good idea.”
Police have their own more detailed tracking system to help them follow crime called Spillman, but the crimereports.com is geared for Neighborhood Watch programs and for homeowners who want to be aware and help make their community safer.
The site gives information about the types and locations of crimes. However, names of individuals are not given.
Crimes can be searched using specific time periods as well. Users can sign up on the site to receive free crime reports delivered to their e-mail addresses.
“It's a way for the public to see how their neighborhood is doing because they don't really have access to all police reports,” said Ferrell.
“It gives them an idea of what to watch for vehicle burglaries, home burglaries and things like that. You can kind of get an idea of what your neighborhood is like.”
The program is being implemented in many cities throughout the state. According to Paul, the State Attorney General's Office is paying the bill for the program for the first two years.
According to the site, 261 law enforcement agencies nationwide are involved with the program and Utah is the first state to make it available statewide.
So far, Pleasant Grove and Lehi police agencies are the first to be involved in the new program in north Utah County.
Pleasant Grove Police Chief Tom Paul said he hopes that the use of the Web site will lead to a greater apprehension rate of criminals.
“If you see something suspicious or something is out of place, just call us and we can take care of it,” Ferrell said.