For three weeks now, Red Deerians have had a better idea of the crime happening in their city, thanks to easy access to a new community crime map.
The RCMP crime map — at www.reddeer.ca/rcmp — shows crime over the past 14 days that resulted in a police report.
Red Deer RCMP Cpl. Karyn Kay said feedback has been positive.
“People do like to be in the know,” said Kay about the map that went public on July 4.
“We’re glad to engage the citizens of Red Deer and hopefully provide a strong understanding of what is going on in their community.”
She said making the map available also encourages citizens to report suspicious activity.
“When they know what to look for, and know what’s happening in their community, we seem to get a better response for calls for service.”
She said sometimes, there are rumours on social media, so it is nice to make sure people know what is actually happening in their neighbourhood.
The crime mapping tool is helping to build a better connection with younger, tech-savvy generations, she said.
“This is a huge step in the right direction for some of those relationships,” Kay said.
Paul Goranson, director of protective services with the city, said most people say it was time for Red Deer to have a crime map, an aid that has been available in other communities.
“It’s really intended to be an education tool to help people understand things that are happening in their neighbourhood, to be aware, and take measures to protect their property,” Goranson said.
The map gives people a visual image for a better picture of crime, and provides accurate information, he said.
“Anyone can put anything up (on social media), and it doesn’t necessarily reflect what’s really happening.”