The following Spotcrime notice was emailed to the Maple Heights City Council president and Maple Heights law department December 14, 2013. No response from any of them yet regarding the email that was sent.
Question: Is Maple Heights participating? If not, why not? Residents of Maple Heights want to know about crime in their city, and there are free resources available. The police have asked for what? ..$45,000 for new computers, and some members of city council and the mayor want us to pass a levy that will mean a tax hike. We need to ask for crime data to be available thru internet companies like Spotcrime.
"FROM SPOTCRIME (12.14.2013):
"When SpotCrime launched in 2007, we were one of the only companies to offer free crime mapping to every agency in US. That same year, the price of crime mapping services averaged between $20,000 to $300,000 per agency.
Just recently, the reportedly largest police vendor crime mapping company, CrimeReports.com, announced they are finally giving away their crime mapping for free to all police agencies.
The only other large scale crime mapping vendor that still requires payment from police departments is CrimeMapping.com. If your agency is paying for public crime mapping, we recommend you ask about the free options.
We think SpotCrime's competitive and innovative approach has made an impact on the cost of public crime mapping for everyone. With over 70 million alerts sent this year alone, we feel we've made an impact in actually getting crime information to the public as well.
Unfortunately, vendor crime mapping companies in the market today still lock up public crime data. They get hired to make the data public and then add restrictions on how the public can use the data. This prevents the public from using and sharing the information, and limits how the press reports on the crime data.
Our hope is that all agencies across the US will continue to embrace the benefits behind opening up crime data. We need your help in stopping this game of 'Public Crime Data Keep Away'.
If your local police agency doesn't have a public feed accessible to everyone without restrictions, reach out and ask them to create one. Let them know there are free resources available to them. If they aren't sure where to start, have them contact us, we'll be happy to help!
Let's all help make public crime data fully public.