Tucked away underneath an innocuous-looking link marked "statistics" on the St. Louis Park Police Department website, St. Louis Park residents can find a wealth of information.
Every day, the department makes a map of crimes and incidents that occured in the last 24 hours, and publishes it online through a service called My Neighborhood Update. Residents are even given access to several different data, highlighting trends in certain types of crime, crime locations, and crime frequency.
The map doesn't offer too much detail about each incident—but that's where Patch comes in. If you see an incident that you want to know more about, let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, and we'll make sure to check for it in next week's crime report!
When reviewing the information, the police ask residents to please keep the following in mind:
- St. Louis Park continues to be a safe, secure community with relatively low crime rates. The city promotes the philosophy of proactive, community-oriented policing and partnership building with the community to help identify and solve problems before they become more serious crimes.
- Only reported incidents are represented. Not all crime and other incidents are reported to police.
- Not all incidents are crimes and many incidents do not generate a police report. Quality of life issues such as noise, animal complaints and parking/driving complaints are not typically criminal in nature and may not generate a police report.
- Statistics can be misleading. Comparing data in different areas to decide which area is safer is difficult. Some areas contain higher density housing and/or commercial properties that may generate higher volumes of incidents/crimes than lower density housing with little or no commercial properties.
- No one can predict solely on the basis of past data exactly where crime will occur in the future.
- Although people tend to be most fearful of crimes committed by strangers, many reported crimes are committed by friends, acquaintances and family members.
- What feels safe is different for everyone. Do not rely on statistics alone when selecting a new place to live. Visit the area at different times of the day to see what it’s like; talk to neighbors and businesses in the area; find out if there is an active neighborhood association and contact the neighborhood leader. See the St. Louis Park City Website for a list of neighborhoods and neighborhood groups.