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Crime falls thanks to crime map in Czech town

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Prague, March 1 (CTK) – Crime has considerably fallen in the small town of Kolin, central Bohemia, thanks to a pilot project of crime mapping allowing the police to predict where crime may occur, daily Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) writes on Tuesday.

The police in Kolin have been using the smart maps for over a year. Thanks to them, they may be able to be on the site of a crime at the same time as an offender, MfD writes.

In Central Bohemia, the new system of planning the patrols by means of the smart maps was widened to the towns of Nymburk, Pribram, Stara Boleslav and Mlada Boleslav at the end of last year, it adds.

In February, it was also introduced in Benesov and now it is being set in motion in other regions, too.

“At present, we are dealing with the technological and legislative aspects of the affair. We presume that the project will be implemented in other regional police headquarters, too,” police spokeswoman Marketa Janovska is quoted as saying.

In the model town of Kolin, crime plummeted by 60 percent in the past two years, MfD writes.

In 2013, there were 1,304 offences, while the figure fell to 432 in the town with about 30,000 inhabitants last year, it adds.

The maps that are now available to the police contain a great deal of details about criminal acts, minor offences and unemployment, MfD writes.

“Of course, the crime rate would have slightly fallen even without the maps, but they have proven their worth,” Central Bohemia police chief Vaclav Kucera is quoted as saying.

“At the same time, it did not happen that we have just pushed the criminals to the neighbouring area,” he added.

New information such as that about the location of cash dispensers and gambling rooms is being continually added to the maps, MfD writes.

In the event, it will be possible to use an algorithm predicting when and where a crime will occur, it adds.

Such a system is already being used in the USA, MfD writes.

In Kolin, the maps at first determined a number of problem sites, thanks to which most of them were “eradicated,” it adds.

“The red has remained in the sites with the biggest concentration of people such as shopping centers and railway stations, ” Kolin police chief Jiri Fejfar is quoted as saying.

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