MPD Daily Crime Summaries Replaced With Less Informative Map Feed

MPD Replaces Good Crime Summaries With Bad Ones

As described here, MPD temporarily resumed the daily crime summaries for the neighborhood and district listservs following complaints about the crime map replacements. The operative word there was “temporarily”. Those who follow the MPD2D listserv may have noticed recently that the crime summaries changed format dramatically. Find out how the new reports stack up to the old ones after the jump:

When people raised a ruckus back in January about the decision to stop the daily crime summaries, MPD heard two basic complaints: that the map didn’t work and that there needs to be a text feed for the listservs. Apparently both those problems were (somewhat) solved. Frankly, GM never had any technical problems with the crime map, he just didn’t think it was very good.

But that’s neither here nor there, what GM and others were particularly peeved about was the loss of a daily (or semi-daily) email listing the crimes by PSA. MPD claimed it took too much time for a sworn officer to draft it. Moreover, MPD said it was concerned about confidential information being released.

MPD compromised and now sends out a daily email, but it’s not nearly as informative as the old reports. Here’s an example of the old ones from February 19th:

PSA 206

Theft occurred in the 3200 block of M Street NW on 2/14/09 between 
8:15 pm and 8:20 pm. A citizen reports that one subject stole a coat 
from the location. The subject is described as a white male, 5’7″ 
and 135 lbs.

Theft occurred in the 3200 block of M Street NW on 2/14/09 at 4:00 
pm. An employee reports that two subjects entered the location and 
place assorted clothing items in a shopping bag and walked out of 
the store without paying. The first subject is described as a black 
male of dark complexion, 6’3″ and 170 lbs. The second subject is 
described as a black male of medium complexion, 5’6″ and 150 lbs.

Theft occurred in the 3200 block of M Street NW on 2/14/09 between 
7:30 pm and 8:45 pm. A citizen reports that while dining at the 
location unknown subject(s) stole her wallet out of her purse while 
it hung on her chair.

Shoplifting occurred in the 3200 block of M Street NW on 2/14/09 
between 6:30 pm and 6:40 pm. An employee reports that a subject tore 
the security sensor off of the several items and placed it inside of 
a bag. The subject passed all registers and was stopped by an 
employee. The case was closed with the arrest of one adult male.

Theft from auto occurred 29th & M Street NW on 2/14/09 between 4:00
pm and 4:30. A citizen reports that a subject smashed the rear 
passenger side window of the vehicle and stole a laptop computer and 
personal items.

Sure, maybe we don’t need all this detail, but it’s certainly interesting and can sometimes give you some good ideas about how to avoid being a crime victim.

Now compare the listings above to what started getting released around the beginning of March:

PSA : 206
CCN : 09030187
RPT DATE : Mar 6 2009 12:00AM
SHIFT : DAY
OFFENSE : Theft
METHOD : 2
BLOCK : 3200 B/O M ST NW
LOCATION : Specialty Store
START DT : 03/06/2009
START TM : 13:00:00
END DT : 03/06/2009
END TM : 13:10:00
———— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— –
PSA : 206
CCN : 09030212
RPT DATE : Mar 6 2009 12:00AM
SHIFT : EVN
OFFENSE : Theft
METHOD : 2
BLOCK : 1200 B/O WISCONSIN AVE NW
LOCATION : Specialty Store
START DT : 03/06/2009
START TM : 15:35:00
END DT : 03/06/2009
END TM : 
———— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— –
PSA : 206
CCN : 09030250
RPT DATE : Mar 6 2009 12:00AM
SHIFT : DAY
OFFENSE : Theft F/Auto
METHOD : 1
BLOCK : 3200 B/O M ST NW
LOCATION : Parking Lot/Parking Garage
START DT : 03/06/2009
START TM : 12:30:00
END DT : 03/06/2009
END TM : 15:20:00

Doesn’t paint nearly as clear a picture does it? (By the way, GM believes the category “Method” refers to what degree the crime was [i.e. first or second degree]). What this appears to be is the map data feed, and it’s not nearly as descriptive as the old reports.

And hell, they’re not even gathered by PSA. You have to browse through the whole list to find all the crimes for your particular neighborhood.

Supposedly MPD had good reasons to stop the daily crime summaries, but what they’re replacing it with is far inferior. MPD2D promises more descriptive crime alerts when a particularly troubling crime has occurred, but they already did that. Every which way you look at it, this decision leaves the citizens with less information than they had before and that’s a shame.

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1 Comment

Filed under Crime

One response to “MPD Daily Crime Summaries Replaced With Less Informative Map Feed

  1. Pingback: Vox Populi » MPD sends out bad but giggle-worthy Crime Summaries

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