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Police No Help for Crime Map Project
February 22nd, 2008

When you type an address or zip code into Everyblock, the website presents you with a variety of localized information. You can find up-to-date news items, restaurant reviews or even CraigsList postings all laid out on a map. You can even subscribe, so updates for an area of interest get sent to you.

They also offer a selection of localized government data, such as building violations and restaurant inspections. But this information comes from publicly accessible databases. And as the folks at Everyblock seek to expand the available information on their site, they’ve begun reaching out to the city and other governments to provide more information than they can scrape from the Web. But the site’s founder, Adrian Holovaty, told the Fimoculous blog, “We’ve run into many roadblocks there, from the political to the technical.”

Currently, they are focusing on getting crime data for New York City. Everyblock is the direct decedent of, so it may be no surprise that they start here. They haven’t been having luck getting that data from the NYPD, however. “I have attempted to get incident level crime data from the Police Department, but was denied,” says Daniel O’Neil, Everyblock’s resident People Person.

No comment was available from the police by the time this post went up.

The CompStat program has gained national accolades for mapping out crimes. But unlike Chicaco’s CLEAR system, the CompStat statistics are not released to the public on a block by block level.

“We commend the Chicago police for doing that,” says O’Neil, “We think it should be the standard”

Everyblock’s next step is a Freedom of Information Law request.

By on February 22, 2008, 5:00 pm
In category: Crime & Safety,Tech | 2 Comments »

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2 Responses to “Police No Help for Crime Map Project”

  1. Benjamin Smith Says:
    February 27th, 2008 at 3:12 pm

    The LAPD has a very well designed feature for mapping up-to-date Compstat type data. You can type in any address, and the radius you wish to view (1 mile, 5 mile, etc.) as well as a timeframe (last 3 days, last week, etc.)

    you can see it here:

    And for more posts on the topic, here:

  2. Friday Links Roundup « Says:
    February 29th, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    […] Wonkster reports that NYC neighborhood resource is facing trouble in obtaining crime data from the NYPD to contribute to its mapping project.  NYC is now lagging […]

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