Free iOS app gets local communities involved in crime watching

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Virginia?s Marion Police Department is encouraging residents to report crime to law enforcement authorities via a new app for Apple?s iOS -- joining several cities across the U.S. that already use local versions of the software.

iWatchMarion


The app, called iWatchMarion, was released on Nov. 30 by iThinQware in collaboration with the Marion Police Department as a free download intended to streamline crime reporting and notification for the town's residents.

According to the the its developers, iWatch is meant to raise awareness for crime prevention efforts and help foster a strong relationship between law enforcement and the community.

With the app, both citizens and visitors to the town are able to upload anything from text tips and emails to photos and videos of a crime as it happens. Alerts also include location tags generated by the iPhone's GPS which, after a review of the submissions, allows authorities to dispatch units quickly and effectively to the scene.

Marion -- a town approximately 100 miles southwest of Roanoke, VA -- is the latest location to be added to iThinQware's iWatch lineup: The developer has already built 18 such crime-reporting apps, including services for big cities like Philadelphia and Dallas.

Among iThinQware?s chief competitors is CrimePush, a similar app launched in February that serves select zip codes across the U.S.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    I suppose this identical functionality could be implemented without the police departments, as long as all of the neighbors are "on the same page". In some neighborhoods, the neighbors ARE the criminals.
  • Reply 2 of 11
    kkerstkkerst Posts: 330member
    Disaster. Because too many people will abuse it and report too many stupid things the cops don't have time for. Like, "this person is irritating me" this and that. Unless they (police dept.) has someone just sitting around waiting for these reports, it's a dumb idea in practice, but good on paper.
  • Reply 3 of 11


    Originally Posted by kkerst View Post

    Disaster. Because too many people will abuse it and report too many stupid things the cops don't have time for. Like, "this person is irritating me" this and that. Unless they (police dept.) has someone just sitting around waiting for these reports, it's a dumb idea in practice, but good on paper.


     


    I was certainly thinking the same. Also that the app is quite ugly.

  • Reply 4 of 11
    welshdogwelshdog Posts: 1,644member
    No city would implement such a system without staff to process the submissions. So yes the police department would have someone "sitting around waiting for these reports". It would be a team of people most likely and be a subset of the 911/311/dispatch group.

    Most larger cities have learned that you can't put these sort of citizen input plans in place (whether app based or not) and just ignore them. They are useful if managed and supported correctly and kept out of politics. If these app based reporting programs get caught in political conflict they usually fail. Like the pothole reporting app in San Diego.
  • Reply 5 of 11
    No news, good news doesn't seem to matter the stock continues to get hammered. Maybe Q1 sales are going to disappoint? Android market share taken over Apple..
  • Reply 6 of 11
    How will I use the app, steer, and hold my gun while trailing black teenagers in my affluent neighborhood? Hopefully it supports Siri.
  • Reply 7 of 11

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bedouin View Post



    How will I use the app, steer, and hold my gun while trailing black teenagers in my affluent neighborhood? Hopefully it supports Siri.




    You could have made it sound worse yet: "Will the app drive my gun-holder to track black teenagers illegally trespassing on my white-only affluent neighborhood's domain? Hopefully it has image recognition software?"


     


    Of course, only in a Scifi post apocalyptic universe would that be believable, right?

  • Reply 8 of 11


    It could divert some nonsense complaints away from the phone.

  • Reply 9 of 11

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bedouin View Post



    How will I use the app, steer, and hold my gun while trailing black teenagers in my affluent neighborhood? Hopefully it supports Siri.


     


     


     


    1. Be careful -- I believe the NRA's position is that we need to arm every black teenager in America to help them defend themselves against gun violence.


     


    2. Nothing more satisfying than getting involved in crime watching. More exciting than bird watching any day of the week.

  • Reply 10 of 11
    sr2012sr2012 Posts: 896member
    Apparently there are two versions of the app. For those who are of more "ethnic" persuasion, it lets you see how many people have reported ~you~ for suspicious activity. Kind of like Facebook likes but opposite.
  • Reply 11 of 11
    Virginia - the states that wants to use vaginal probes on women now wants to stick it up everyone's private parts.

    George Zimmerman wishes this app was out a year ago.
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