BRUNSWICK, Maine — The Brunswick Police Department recently joined five other Maine communities in offering the public a new way to learn about crime trends in town.
A crime mapping tool accessible through the Brunswick Police Department website allows users to see what types of arrests have occurred in different parts of town, Brunswick Police Capt. Mark Waltz said Monday.
The service, provided by RAIDS Online, www.raidsonline.com, through Google maps, plots and analyzes crime data uploaded by local police. Brunswick’s map shows information recorded since April 14.
New data will be added weekly, Waltz said.
Users can click on the site, then click on a map of the United States to select a state and town or city.
Along with Brunswick, the other Maine communities to offer the service are Auburn, Augusta, Lewiston, Lisbon and Saco.
Users can select a specific street or address, and limit their search to particular dates and types of crimes, ranging from homicide to theft and operating under the influence.
Unique icons identify locations where a crime occurred, and users can click on the icon to obtain more information about the arrest — although no names are provided, and in the case of sex crimes, the specific address is not available, Waltz said.
While the program is primarily designed as a public information tool, Waltz said, “One thing it may do [for the department] is help us notice patterns in certain areas of town.”
Residents also can sign up to receive an emailed breakdown of recent crime activity in their neighborhood, according to the release from RAIDS Online.
The tool can be accessed by visiting the Brunswick Police Department website at www.brunswickpd.org.
For more information about using the crime mapping program, call Waltz at 725-6670 extension 103.