GREAT FALLS — We’re kicking off a new segment on Montana This Morning, checking in with law enforcement to help better understand what’s going on in our community and learn how law enforcement agencies operate. Shannon Newth talked with Lt. Doug Otto of the Great Falls Police Department about crime trends in Great Falls, a new radio system officers are using, and changes to the hiring process.
Lt. Otto also told Shannon about a tool that was implemented several months ago to give more people a more in-depth look at reports of crimes, called Crime Mapping. The site allows people to see general locations of reported crimes and the types of incidents that officers are responding to. The map allows users to zoom in on specific areas, click on icons for more information about specific incidents, and customize the map to highlight specific types of incidents. You can also set up alerts to receive email notifications about incidents, and customize the emails based on type of crime, location, and date.
According to the GFPD, the site pulls data from the agency's records management system every 12 hours, usually at 5 a.m. and 5 p.m. each day. They note that the information does not include certain types of incidents, such as "...traffic stops, crashes, lost children/persons, animal related incidents, alarms, or other non-criminal law enforcement activity."
If you have questions for the police department, email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.