Used with permission: Seattle Times, July 22nd, 2010
Seattle Times staff reporter
To access the Seattle Police Department’s online crime-reporting system, go to the department’s homepage at www.seattle.gov/police and click the “File a Report” quick link or go directly to
Source: Seattle Police Department
Seattle police have launched a new online system that will allow residents to report low-level property crimes.
The new system will allow crime victims to report property thefts of less than $500, property-damage crimes, car break-ins and identity theft.
“These crimes are those when an officer is not needed at the scene,” said police spokesman Detective Mark Jamieson.
The new online-reporting system is just an option, Jamieson said, and doesn’t replace calling the Seattle Police Department’s nonemergency number at 206-625-5011.
The online-reporting system is not for emergencies, Jamieson said. Citizens in danger or who have an emergency should call 911.
Jamieson said that people are encouraged to use the online system to report a low-level property crime if the suspect is gone, or when there is little to no information on a suspect.
The benefit of the online-reporting system is that it “empowers people to fill out their own police report,” Jamieson said. He said the online system will lessen call volume for police-call operators.
He said citizens won’t have to wait for a police officer to show up to the crime scene, which sometimes can take hours depending on how many other crimes require police presence.
After an online report is filed, it will go to a Police Department supervisor who will examine and approve the report. The approved report will then be sent to the police record-management system, where it is investigated like any other police report.
The reporting party can print a copy of the report.
Victims receive an incident number after filing the online report and it takes up five days for them to be processed for approval, Jamieson said.
The online reports can be updated online and do not have to be refiled if the victim finds additional information, according to the police website.