Telling you about the latest in open data and data initiatives in the City of New Orleans.

August 2, 2016

Data wonks rejoice! NOPD makes even more police data available to the public

by Tyler A. Gamble, NOPD Communications Director
Filed under: open data, police data initiative

When Mayor Mitch Landrieu took office in 2011, he made a major policy decision to increase police transparency by releasing NOPD calls for service data to the public online through the City’s Open Data Portal. The move made raw police data available to the public for the first time and allowed individuals and groups to examine and analyze police responses and interactions throughout the city.

Since then, the NOPD has led the way in making criminal justice data available and easily accessible to the public. Just last year, The Sunlight Foundation – a national, non-profit organization focused on government transparency and accountability –touted the NOPD as being “ahead of the curve” on open data. The organization called the amount of data the NOPD publishes online “uncommon” and said the department has “excelled in producing criminal justice data.

The NOPD is also one of 21 police departments participating in the White House Police Data Initiative that aims to better use data and technology in ways that will build community trust.

Combining the department’s work with the White House Police Data Initiative and the federal Consent Decree, here are four more areas of new police data that are now available on the NOPD website:

  • Calls for Service Data—All calls for service made to the NOPD from 2011 to present are available for review. This summer, the department added more fields to help individuals conduct deeper analysis of the data, including the initial call type and priority.
  • Stop and Search Data (Field Interview Cards)—Raw data collected anytime an individual is stopped and interviewed by an NOPD officer from 2010 to present is available for review. Annual reports and high-level interactive analysis is included.
  • Metadata for Body Worn Cameras and In-car Cameras—Raw data on when and where footage was recorded, how long it was recorded and what item number it corresponds with from 2010 to present.
  • Public Reports—Comprehensive reports on major aspects of the federal consent decree on Bias-Free Policing, Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Community Engagement, Training, Crisis Intervention Team and the Public Integrity Bureau

Even more police data on the way

Later this fall, the NOPD plans to add data on its recruitment efforts and use of force online as well. The use of force data will include information on both the officer and the citizen involved, including race, gender, age, years of experience, level of force used and more. It’s all part of the department’s goal to improve the quality of the police data available and to do a better job of using it to analyze crime trends and management practices.   

In addition, the department is completely revamping its current COMSTAT process and plans to focus on greater supervisor accountability through stronger data-driven management. As part of this new process, the department will phase out its weekly public department-wide COMSTAT meeting and replace it with multiple high-level internal reviews on a monthly basis. At the same time, the NOPD will make comprehensive management data available online broken down by police district.