By Martin Couch
As reported in a May story on BryantDaily.com, the Bryant Police Department is the first in Arkansas to initiate crime mapping for the public.
Crime mapping allows a person to look at a site of the city and see where crimes are being committed by the use of various icons. Bryant Police Chief Tony Coffman announced last May that the station would be getting crime mapping and, on Tuesday, it became a reality.[more]
"We are live on-line as of today," Coffman said.
The police department received pledges for donations to subscribe to Crime Mapping software that will assist law enforcement officers as well as residents.
"Our goal here is to increase communication between the citizens and the police department and to share information on crime activities," Coffman said. "We encourage everyone to visit CrimeMapping.com and click on Arkansas, then select Bryant Police Department."The reports from the patrolmen will be added into the site and be used to map the crimes being committed throughout the city. This process is not instant, especially if a case is under investigation, however it is accurate within the location selected after a couple of days from the time the crime was reported.
The Crime Mapping system allows citizens to see where burglaries, with or without guns, are being committed, where break-ins occur in vehicles and residences, where domestic violence cases are and the tracking of sex offenders and where they are residing.
"It's very informative and I believe the public, along with the law enforcement, will use this tool," Captain Phillip Newcomb said. "An officer coming on duty after being off for two days can, in a glance, see what has occurred. Someone moving into the area can use this tool for making important decisions on locating into the area. I hope other cities locally and throughout the state will subscribe to this also. I believe it’s a win-win situation."