March 14, 2019 8:59 am

Peterborough police encouraging residents to use online crime-reporting tool

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Peterborough residents have been able to report crimes online since 2014 when the local police service launched a new website.

However, Peterborough police say the service is not being used very often.

When Scott Gilbert took over as Peterborough’s police chief in the summer of 2018, he conducted a survey that showed the usage rate for reporting crime online was just 0.8 per cent a day over a three-year period.

Gilbert says he would like to change that since online crime reporting is a useful tool for officers and the public.

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“If there’s something happening in your area, we need to know about it so that we can deploy resources to try and put an end to the problem that you’re having,” Gilbert told Global News Morning in Peterborough.

One way of doing that, he says, is by filing a report online for minor criminal offences such as theft under $5,000, theft from vehicles, damage to vehicles, mischief to property and fraud scams.

“The fact that you’ve reported it online doesn’t mean that it’s just going to sit in a pile someplace. Somebody will be assigned that report to investigate, and it may mean that later on, an officer goes out, speaks to your neighbours,” said Gilbert.

Police describe the service as a two-way crime-fighting tool that, if used properly and efficiently, might help reduce non-emergency crime in the Electric City.

READ MORE: B.C. police rein in teenage crime fighters who posted videos online

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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