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Crime and Courts

Wichita Police Tracking Crime 'Hot Spots' With New Searchable Map


An online mapping service is providing up-to-date information about crimes that happen in the city of Wichita.

The Wichita Police Department is offering access to a new Community Crime Map that is searchable and updated daily. The interactive map shows information about crimes and sex offender locations going back to 2009.

Deputy Police Chief Troy Livingston said Wednesday the mapping service provides crime analysis for the community and law enforcement.

"This gives us the opportunity to schedule smarter so really we can shift resources to the 'hot spots' and then crime-specific policing in those hot spots to help combat the problem," Livingston said.

In addition to crime incidents, the map also shows boundaries for police beats, bureaus, Wichita City Council districts and the Wichita Public School District.

The website allows users to sign up for email alerts that can be sent daily, weekly or monthly.

“The goal here is to empower residents to have an active role in combating, addressing and resolving crime in areas where they live and work,” Livingston said.

He said when people are aware of what’s going on around them, they are better witnesses, better reporters of crime and they do things that make themselves less likely to be crime victims.

“So if you see that your neighborhood is experiencing larcenies or burglaries to automobiles, that would be a good reminder to take your items in with you—don’t leave anything in the car, lock your car and turn on your porch light,” he said. “We think that citizens will be much more powerful in combating crime with this information.”

The Wichita Police Department is collaborating with the computer-assisted research company Lexis-Nexis for the crime data map. Livingston says the department has been working to purchase and implement the crime-analysis software package since 2012.

Sedgwick County launched a similar crime mapping tool last fall that uses data from the sheriff’s office.

Follow Deborah Shaar on Twitter @deborahshaar. To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.