Oakland Puts Crime Statistics Maps On the Internet
October 2004 Police officers go to a shooting near a liquor store. It is in a tough west Oakland neighbourhood. Newspapers or TV don’t often write about this kind of crime. In a few days the Internet will have all the details about the crime. Jerry Brown's the mayor of Oakland looks at this Internet site. It shows all the crime in Oakland. He says, "There's a lot of crime in that area, isn't it." The mayor is promoting the quarter million dollar project. This project makes Oakland the first city in the country to put its crime facts on the web. From these facts, people and police can find out about crimes. Maybe then they can do something about them and stop them. On the map a red star is for a homicide. A green star is for assault. The red circles are for armed robbery. A light green star is a forcible rape. An orange circle child is for abuse. The purple triangles are car thefts. From the map, you can click on the crime to get more facts. You can even read the police report. This is powerful information. People can use the facts to decide not to buy a house in a neighbourhood. People who live in the neighbourhood may want to do something to make their neighbourhood safe. Police Chief Richard Word says he wants to work with the people as equal partners to make it safer for all. The mayor says the whole plan is to get people to work with the police to fight crime. Questions. 1. Is Oakland a safe city? If not, why not? 2. What is the west Oakland neighbourhood like? 3. What are they doing to make people know about the crimes? 4. What does the mayor of Oakland say about crime in Oakland? 5. What is he doing at this time? 6. What’s the mayor’s project about? 7. What does the light greet start mean? 8. How many different starts can we find on the map? 9. How can you get more information about crimes? 10. Why is this information useful? 11. What does the Police Chief want to do? 12. What’s the plan about?

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