A new way to review crime activity

The Reporter has been publishing weekly lists of police activity since 2001.

The logs - which are provided to the Reporter by Boston Police - are intended to give residents a more thorough and timely understanding of the volume and locations of crime incidents in the neighborhood. Over the years, they have become a valuable tool for crime watch groups and individual residents and merchants.

The technology now exists for the Reporter to present this data in new ways.

In this new online system, we have ordered the crimes by category and included maps that pin-point where certain crimes have happened. It is not intended to be - nor should it be considered - a complete list of all the police activity in Dorchester and Mattapan over that given time period. By focusing on trends by crime category - and including a visual guide - we feel it will prove more helpful to readers.

Some specific caveats:

  • The maps are based on reports provided to the Reporter from Boston Police districts C-11, B-2 and B-3 and information is subject to change as police investigate the crimes.
  • The maps do not contain data on incidents on state or MBTA property (for example, subway or commuter-rail stations) or for areas patrolled by the Massachusetts State Police (for example, parks and parkways). Also missing: Reports from most of Columbia Point, which is served by district C-6.
  • Police log data does not specify whether incidents happen inside or outside a given address. Please keep in mind that the address listed in connection to a reported crime often denotes a police action outside of that address, on the sidewalk or on street.
  • Names of people arrested have been deliberately withheld by the Reporter, although we note when an arrest has been made in connection with a specific incident.
  • Sexual assaults are not included in this list since Boston Police withhold vital information, such as location.
  • Certain information about drug-related incidents are not included in the Drugs category, at the request of BPD, as it may compromise the security of ongoing investigations.
  • The Reporter encourages residents to use this information as a tool to help and inform and improve the security of their own families - and the community around them.
  • The best way to do this is to join a crime watch group on your street. If a crime watch group does not yet exist on your street - or you are unsure if there is one close-by - the Reporter recommends that you contact the Boston Police Crime Watch Unit.
  • If you have information related to a specific crime, you may contact Boston Police anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 800-494-TIPS or texting TIP to CRIME (27463). Report suspicious and criminal behavior immediately by calling 9-1-1.
  • If you would like to speak to a Boston Police officer about an ongoing quality-of-life problem in your neighborhood, we recommend that residents call the district Community Service Office. For Area C-11, call: 617-343-4524. For Area B-3, call 617-343-4717.