January 19, 2010
Omega Group Deploys Esri Technology for Its Crime Mapping Site
GIS Makes It Easier to Provide Valuable Incident Data to the Public
Redlands, CaliforniaThe Omega Group has recently upgraded its Crimemapping.com Web site using Esri geographic information system (GIS) technology. The newly improved site allows law enforcement agencies to automatically upload crime data for public consumption via the Web. Site visitors view digital maps of their area of interest and have a fast and efficient method to point and click their way to information. In addition, people can learn about crime activity near their home or business by subscribing to Crime Alerts, automated e-mail notifications that are sent out whenever new activity occurs in their area. The service is free to the general public.
"Keeping the public well informed has been effective in reducing crime," says Milan Mueller, president of the Omega Group. "Putting crime data out there helps promote transparency and trust. We developed the site in response to the needs of our law enforcement community, which we've been serving since 1992."
"The Omega Group is a pioneer in crime mapping throughout North America," says Lew Nelson, retired police chief and law enforcement solutions manager for Esri. "Crimemapping.com allows police agencies to use their own data combined with advanced geocoding capabilities. It supplies accurate, up-to-date crime information to the public using an intuitive Web site."
More than 75 agencies from all over the United States take advantage of Crimemapping.com, including San Francisco, California; Anchorage, Alaska; Ft. Worth, Texas; Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; Duluth, Minnesota; and Miami, Florida. More than 80 other agencies are scheduled to go live in a few weeks.
Citizens take advantage of a digital map interface to learn more about crime in their neighborhood. They can scroll over an incident icon—such as a DUI or burglary—to view more information on the specific incident, such as time, description, and date.
The Omega Group works with each agency to upload incident data directly into the Web site database. Participating agencies agree to have their crime data extracted on a regular basis from each department's records system. This ensures that the information being viewed through a Web browser is always the most current available. The site maintains a high level of location accuracy by geocoding against local Esri street maps.
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