Crime Data Transparency

DC Open Data Website: Public Safety

The following was recently added to the DC Open Data Website, where data can be downloaded, searched, and filtered. This website is maintained by the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO) for DC.

>> Crime Incidents – 2016

ANC Commissioner’s Quest for Prosecution Data

ANC Commissioner Drops Lawsuit After DOJ Turns Over Conviction Rate Data (DCist, Dec. 21, 2016)

>> DC Prosecution Data (2010-2015)

These #FOIACakes Taste Funny (, May 24, 2016)

Neighborhood activist sues Justice Department over obtaining conviction rates (Washington Post, May 18, 2016)

ANC Commissioner Sues DOJ for Crime Data Denied Via FOIA Request (Washington City Paper, May 17, 2016)

Activist Sues DOJ for Crime Stats in Capitol Hill Neighborhood (NBC Washington, May 16, 2016)

Hill East Community Leader Sues DOJ for Crime Data (Hill Now, May 17, 2016)

Copy of Complaint:  Click here

Hill East Commissioner Plans to Sue DOJ Over Denied Crime-Data FOIA Request (Washington City Paper, Mar. 30, 2016)

A Local Demand For Information About Federal Prosecution Of D.C. Crime (Kojo Nnamdi Show, Mar. 8, 2016)

ANC Commissioner Denise Krepp starts #FOIACakes Petition (, Jan. 27, 2016)

To sign petition, click here.

Justice Department says it does not track data D.C. activist is seeking (Washington Post, Jan. 23, 2016)

D.C. woman seeking conviction-rate data isn’t deterred by cost of request (Washington Post, Dec. 12, 2015)

Capitol Hill Residents to Hold Bake Sale to Raise Money for FOIA Request (NBC4, Nov. 30, 2015)

Online Tracking System for DC Crimes

Screen Shot 2016-01-09 at 10.17.12 PM

** Actually, DC residents deserve an online tracking system for ALL reported crimes.**

Will the Mayor deliver?

ShotSpotter:  Gunshot Detection Data

“To improve research and empower citizens to make their communities safer, let’s insist that ShotSpotter data be made public.” To reduce gun violence, empower citizens to make their communities safer (Brookings, Feb. 4, 2016)

DC Police use ShotSpotter.  Currently, the data is available to the public only through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.


This may be the best way to measure gun violence in America (Washington Post, Apr. 23, 2016)

Washington D.C. ShotSpotter Shooting Incidents Data January 2006-June 2013 (Public Intelligence, Nov. 13, 2013) (data obtained through a public records request)

Shots heard around the District (Washington Post, Nov. 2, 2013)

Mapping gunshots near DC schools (Urban Institute, 2014)

National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) / National Crime Statistics Exchange (NCS-X)

The National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS), maintained by the FBI, contains detailed incident level data regarding individual offenses and arrests submitted by law enforcement agencies. The goal is to help decision makers and legislative bodies formulate effective strategies to reduce crime. Participation in NIBRS is voluntary.

The National Crime Statistics Exchange (NCS-X), spearheaded by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), is a program designed to increase participation in NIBRS.

* DC has not joined *

Why Participating in NIBRS Is a Good Choice for Law Enforcement (Police Chief Magazine, March 2016)

DIANE DIMOND: Tracking crime stats is important (Stillwater News Press, Mar. 12, 2016) (“Law enforcement needs to know what it doesn’t know. Tracking trends in crime is a way to keep communities safe. . . ‘NIBRS has the ability to give you the who, what, when, where, and sometimes the why of a crime.’”

FBI will overhaul tracking report, add missing crimes (USA Today, Apr. 2, 2015)

National Police Data Initiative (PDI) 

This initiative, launched by the White House, focuses on generating and implementing new data and technology innovations within key jurisdictions, civil society groups, and federal, state, and local agencies.

PDI is centered on two key components:

  • Using open data to build transparency and increase community trust, and
  • Using data to enhance internal accountability through effective analysis.”

Participating Cities    * DC has not joined *

Public Safety Open Data Portal

The Police Foundation’s Public Safety Open Data Portal is intended to serve as a central clearinghouse for accessing, visualizing and analyzing local and national law enforcement and public safety open datasets.The portal contains select datasets from agencies participating in the White House’s Police Data Initiative (PDI) as well as national data to provide context for the local data.


Only 53 police agencies participating in national push for use of force statistics (Washington Post, Apr. 26, 2016)

Beware of “Big Data Hubris” When It Comes to Police Reform (, Mar. 7, 2016) (“For the past several years police departments around the United States have been betting on “big data” to revolutionize the way they predict, measure and, ideally, prevent crime. Some data scientists are now turning the lens on law enforcement itself in an effort to increase public insight into how well police officers are doing their jobs.”)

How To Make Sense Of Conflicting, Confusing And Misleading Crime Statistics (, Jan. 8, 2016)

U.S. City Open Data Census:  Crime Datasets (“The US City Open Data Census is an ongoing, crowdsourced measure of the current state of access to a selected group of datasets in municipalities across the United States.”)

Score for Washington, DC:  70%

Insights from the NYPD’s Most Detailed Data Release Ever (, Jan. 4, 2016)

“For the first time in its history, the New York Police Department released incident-level reported crime data . . . [I]t’s worth congratulating the NYPD and the de Blasio administration for making this happen . . . But it’s also worth noting that many other cities (e.g. Los Angeles, Chicago, Seattle, Denver, Boston) provide more granular crime data, with longer histories (many years, instead of just three quarters of data), a broader set of reported crimes (not just six or seven major felonies), and with more detail (has an arrest been made, what are the victim demographics), so as exciting as this moment is, it’s good to remember that New York is still very far behind its peers on police data transparency.

Which Cities Share The Most Crime Data? (, Dec. 28, 2015)

The Police Data Initiative: A 5-Month Update (, Oct. 27, 2015)

White House Police Data Initiative Could Lead To Reform — If The Public Demands It (Huffington Post, Aug. 21, 2015)

White House plan for police data could face obstacles (USA Today, June 22, 2015)

Launch of the Police Data Initiative (, May 18, 2015)

Using Technology and Data to Improve Community Policing: The Police Data Initiative (, Apr. 9, 2015)