Mayor of London Boris Johnson has used his regular press conference to launch a new crime mapping website which enables Londoners to access crime figures for their neighbourhood.
The site follows an election promise by the Mayor to ensure Londoners were better informed about crime rates, both in the capital and in their local area.
The site includes a set of interactive maps which detail crime rates and links to other sites including Safer Neighbourhoods Team web pages. The site also compares the crime levels in local neighbourhoods to the London average.
Johnson, who was joined by Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Paul Stephenson, said the service “means that Londoners will, at long last, be able to get information about crime levels in their neighbourhood at the click of a button.”
“Crime mapping puts information into the hands of every London citizen about the levels of crimes as well as contact details of their local police officers. This is a major step forward in enabling Londoners to really be able to assess the work of their local police in tackling the crimes that affect their neighbourhood.”
Deputy Commissioner Stephenson suggested the new site would help the force tackle local misunderstandings of crime rates, commenting: “we have found that in some cases Londoners’ perception of crime is higher than the reality and the crime maps may help to reassure communities about the general safety of their local area.”
Liberal Democrats on the London Assembly said the Mayor “must ensure resources aren’t diverted away from tackling the problems of crime to serving gimmicks like this.”
Dee Doocey AM, the Liberal Democrat group’s policing spokesperson at the London Assembly, said the maps “are a useful first step in reducing crime by spreading best practice but we need to also see local detection rates on the maps so the public can hold the police to account if crimes aren’t cleared up. If a criminal thinks they’ll be caught then they’re much more likely to think twice before committing the crime in the first place.”
The crime mapping website can accessed at www.met.police.uk