Just when you are about to sleep, you are awakened by a sudden noise. Suddenly you hear footsteps. Someone has broken into your home! Your heart races like a hammer in your chest. Anxiety, dread and fear cover you as you wonder what you should do next.
This is a typical crime situation that many may face. Maybe this evening, maybe tomorrow, we can never really tell. Crime-even violent crime-is no longer limited to certain countries or big cities. In the resultant climate of fear, many people seek protection. Once, the London’s Times Newspaper reported that “The presumed ‘law-abiding majority’ is nothing but a cosy myth.” In order to disprove that, law enforcement agencies are up to their neck looking for ways to deliver faster and more efficiently.
The Role of Maps to Law Enforcement
Law enforcers are always on the lookout for improved methods to help them drastically reduce crimes. Hence, in recent decades, maps have proved to be invaluable to different agencies of law enforcement. They serve as a key role to protect the citizens from their assigned territories. It is also integral to protect the first responders on criminal site. Maps are used for better collaboration of ideas between crime spot responders and those who are in headquarters. Communication is better enhanced when GIS maps are utilized.
Law enforcement agencies today use mapping applications from online solution providers to turn their Excel spreadsheet data analysis into actionable knowledge. Ever since these applications were adopted, different agencies, departments and jurisdictions have joined together to result enhanced operations. Police officers took time to analyze the maps from their computers and immediately apply their informed geographic knowledge on the streets where the action is.
When maps are used in crime prevention, the result is more astonishing than what police officers were initially expecting. In a populated city in Connecticut for example, a police department was able display better community policing. Their dedication to work coupled with their modern mapping approach allowed them to achieve an impressive downward trend of auto theft crimes as well as burglaries.
With mapping applications used by all departments and by all police officers, crime will no longer be etched on the headlines of different broadsheets. In fact, the community almost always like the new mapping technology implemented as well as the positive results they have already achieved.
The final part of this 5-part article series deals on in-depth application of mapping as a tool for administration. How does law enforcement implement their enforcement plans using mapping technology? How can law enforcement agencies take full advantage of mapping technology in terms of forecasting crime occurrences in the future? The answers to these questions and more will be delivered in the conclusion of this article series.