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Public Transparency Dashboard released by Asheville police

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FILE - The Asheville Police Department (Photo credit: WLOS Staff)

A new online database is available to the public with information on the Asheville Police Department (APD).

On Wednesday, APD announced the “one-stop” public data dashboard in an effort to "provide greater transparency and accountability." A news release from the department states the dashboard includes statistics available through open data sites, formatted in a more accessible way.

"We’ve taken all the information available on multiple different sites and created sort-of a one-stop-shop," Christina Hallingse, APD spokeswoman, said Wednesday.

Hallingse said the dashboard will have a heatmap of the city, showing areas where all crimes or a particular type of crime has occurred.

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"The Asheville Police Department is committed to improving transparency, building relationships, and improving trust with the residents of our community,” said Chief David Zack in Wednesday's release. “The purpose of this dashboard is to provide our residents with the information needed to work collaboratively with law enforcement to develop solutions to make our community safer.”

The site also tracks use of force by officers called "Response to Resist." The data, however, is only for the past two months since a policy change.

"Chief Zack modified APD’s use of force to not only include when officers use force, but when officers show force," Hallingse explained.

The online dashboard also includes frequently asked questions and a customer service survey.

Wednesday's release adds that APD is the first law enforcement agency in the country to roll out a new public data dashboard through Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri).

“We are proud to support the City of Asheville and the Asheville Police Department’s efforts to improve transparency, equity, and community engagement,” said Chris Delaney with Esri Law Enforcement Solutions in the release. “Their new Police Transparency site, based on a configurable Esri solution, is a testament to APD’s leadership and commitment to innovation. It represents a new national model for how progressive police agencies can deliver cost-effective, comprehensive technology to better serve the needs of their community.”

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Click here to view APD's public transparency dashboard.

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