Crime Mapping Reaches New Precision Level

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Extensive crime data collection matched with new technology may soon allow police to predict to a surprising degree of accuracy the number and type of crimes that will occur in a neighborhood one month in advance, the Associated Press reports.

Researchers at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University plan to release software later this summer that, can forecast the number and types of crimes that will occur within a 10-block area, with a 20 percent error rate. “This is the next generation of crime mapping,” said Wilpen Gorr, a professor of public policy and management information systems.

With models similar to those used to warn of recession or inflation, Gorr said researchers matched criminal reports, 911 calls on shots fired, and census data along with yellow page listings and seasonal variations to predict crime numbers.


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