Chattanooga police agree to release crime, other police data

Something good on the police data front. From the Chattanooga Times Free Press today:

Police are considering posting information online about officer-involved shootings, assaults on officers, use-of-force incidents and complaints so that anyone can access it without filing open records requests.

Chattanooga Police Department Chief of Staff David Roddy

Chattanooga Police Department Chief of Staff David Roddy

The department is one of 53 jurisdictions across the country that have committed to Obama’s Police Data Initiative, which aims to increase transparency, trust and accountability through the release of data. The initiative was created in 2015 after a report by the president’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

Police already provide some data through the Chattanooga Public Library’s website. Now, anyone can use the site’s open data portal to examine information on police incident reports dating back to 2005, traffic citation information and 911 calls for service.

“This is not our data,” police Chief of Staff David Roddy said. “This is the community’s data. It’s the community’s actions, victimization, response — we just happen to be the ones responsible for writing that information down. So we need to make that as available and transparent as we can.”

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