August 26, 2010 — The North Carolina State University Department of Public Safety’s Campus Police became the first university law enforcement agency to subscribe to the web based application for public mapping of crime incidents known as CrimeMapping.com. This service debuted to the Wolfpack community this summer and is already contributing to the enhancement of public education regarding campus safety.
The NCSU CrimeMapping.com™ service is a web based geographic information system jointly provided to NCSU by The Omega Group, Inc. and USA Software, Inc. CrimeMapping.com enables community members to track crime incidents in a map view environment via an internet browser. CrimeMapping.com automatically converts crime incident data to pinpoint icons upon which the user can click to retrieve a summary of the case details.
CrimeMapping.com will give the nearly 40,000 daily visitors to the NCSU campus and its related facilities a clear picture of criminal activity on campus. Although the crime rate for NCSU is low, the department wanted to provide a means where students, parents, faculty, employees and visitors could see for themselves what is happening in terms of crime incidents.
According to Campus Police Chief Tom Younce, “We are constantly communicating with the public through surveys about our service and we felt that we could bolster our public education by making CrimeMapping.com available to our campus community.” The Campus Police has incorporated a demonstration of CrimeMapping.com as part of the incoming student/parent campus safety orientation.
A key feature of CrimeMapping.com allows students and their parents to receive Crime Alerts for crime incidents occurring at or near the student’s dormitory or campus residence. By registering their email address and the location of the student’s NCSU residence on CrimeMapping.com, they will receive an email alert whenever a crime incident occurs within the immediate vicinity of the residence.
Police Captain Jon Barnwell, Public Information Officer, notes that the students and parents attending the safety orientation really like the accuracy of the Crimemapping.com visual display. He further reports that he has heard from many of the families, who are familiar with other mapping services from their hometown law enforcement agencies, that CrimeMapping.com appears far easier to use.
The NCSU Campus Police expects that making this technology available to its campus community will further its partnership with its university members.