New, witness-focused crime map is launched this week after its success in Hackney
By Sophie_RT | Wednesday, February 22, 2012, 11:51
A new crime map has been launched across London after its trial in Hackney last summer. This week the charity Witness Confident revealed its new website, streetviolence.org, which allows those who have witnessed street violence in the Capital to come forward and give information on potential crimes without having to deal directly with the police. It also allows victims of street violence to thank passers-by who may have helped.
www.streetviolence.org's interactive crime map
The website contains a map of the city, with the facility to pin point the location in which the incident took place and provide a provide a private statement for police use (without giving your personal details) as well as using drop down menus to describe the basic facts for public viewing. The victim and the police can then see that there is a witness to the incident and - only if necessary, and going via Witness Confident - they can ask you to come forward.
It also allows the public to see whether incidents that have taken place in an area are likely to pose a threat to themselves or their families: whether, for example, attacks nearby are carried out by aquaintances of the victims, or whether they are 'stranger attacks'.
Charity Director, Guy Dehn, says that the purpose of www.streetviolence.org is to "help to reduce the fear of street violence and... help the police to reduce street violence", and he has plenty of support from people within Hackney and beyond. One resident of the borough explained, "Having witness a street murder in Hackney, I made the 999 call giving all my details. However, the police 'lost' my in their system and I was not contacted for nearly two days. Any system which makes the traumatic experience of being a responsible witness easier and encourages people to report street crime has my full support - it is too easy to be fearful of speaking up about violence and this leads directly to street crime escalating within communities."
If you are interested in finding out more about the initiative, or you'd like to use the free service then visit www.streetviolence.org and let us know what you think.