Putting crime on the map

The city of Asheville has unveiled a new Web site that combines local crime statistics with the city’s mapping information to allow users to map and track all sorts of crime trends in the city. The application is dubbed Crime Mapper.

“The idea is to help citizens be more aware of what’s happening in their neighborhoods in a quantifiable sense, rather than an anecdotal sense,” said Jason Mann, the city’s geographical-information system and application-services manager. Another goal of Web site is to provide residents quick access to information that in the past may have taken the Asheville Police Department days to provide.

Crime Mapper presents general statistics about crimes such as homicides, assaults, burglaries and vehicle thefts in geographic areas such as neighborhoods, streets and specific parcels of property. Specific addresses are not attached to the general statistics, Mann said, because local residents that tested the site expressed concerns about privacy. But the site will pinpoint the exact location of crimes deemed “critical incidents” by the Police Department, he added.

The general crime stats are updated daily, according to Mann, and the critical incidents will be updated weekly. The crime numbers apply only to the city of Asheville, but the site may be expanded in the future to include crime statistics from the county.

Go here to view and use Crime Mapper.

— Jason Sandford, multimedia editor

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2 thoughts on “Putting crime on the map

  1. Jason Sandford

    Jason Mann sent me an e-mail to clarify the frequency of updates:

    “I did want to offer just a little bit of clarification on the update frequency for some of the various items: crime statistics – updated daily; crime hotspot display – updated weekly; critical incidents – updated as needed.”

  2. zen

    It’s a little slow, but pretty informative and very interesting to go skipping thru neighborhoods to see crime descriptions and police happenings.

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