(INDIANA) - Several Central Indiana police departments are now making it easier than ever to keep up with crime in your neighborhood.
Kent Erdahl reports, Westfield, Noblesville and Beech Grove are three of the areas where you can search for police reports on an interactive map. The service, available at www.CrimeReports.com, allows you to search for reports posted within hours of it happening.
Steven Stamps and his wife, LaDonna, take care of their three grandchildren five days a week, which is why they're always trying to keep a lookout for crime in their Westfield neighborhood.
"I like to be aware of what's going on," LaDonna Stamps said. "I've always been an aware person, whether I'm in a parking lot, in a shopping center, especially when you've got young kids. You've just always got to be aware of what's going on."
"Everyone wants to know what's going on in their community," said Lt. Charles Hollowell with the Westfield Police Department.
That simple concept motivated Westfield Police to partner with www.CrimeReports.com, a service that puts police data at the public's fingertips.
"Community involvement, that's where we get a lot of answers from and that's how we solve a lot of crimes," Lt. Hollowell said.
The site is easy to use, thanks to interactive maps. If you're looking for a specific type of crime, you can narrow your search, and if you have an iPhone, there's an app for that too, which allows you to sign up for alerts.
"So you're notified when that particular crime actually happens in your neighborhood," Hollowell said.
"I think it's a great idea," said Steven Stamps.
Not only did the Stamps like the idea, they also used the site to check their neighborhood and found very few crime reports.
Since Noblesville provides the service too, their daughter also checked on her family's home. She was surprised to find a recent vehicle break in, and a registered sex offender living nearby.
"It's good to know," said Lauren Blake. "I didn't realize that was going on in the neighborhood, so I'll definitely be checking it out more often."
Though not all cities partner with CrimeReports.com, you can search the entire state for registered sex offenders.
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