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Scranton, Pa., Police Launch Smartphone Crime Reporting App

The new reporting system is for crimes that aren’t currently in progress and don’t have any suspects. Reportable crimes include vandalism, hit-and-runs, identify theft, theft and harassment by communication.

by Frank Wilkes Lesnefsky, The Times-Tribune / May 4, 2020
Downtown Scranton, Pa. Flickr/Brand Clinesmith

(TNS) — Scranton residents can now file police reports from their pocket.

Residents have been able to file reports online for about seven years, but a recent update to the department’s Coplogic Solutions software means anyone can file a report using their smartphone by calling 833-827-5028 and entering their phone number, Police Chief Carl Graziano said.

After entering their number, callers will receive a text with a unique link to file a report, he said. The reporting system is for crimes that aren’t currently in progress and don’t have any suspects, Graziano said. If there’s evidence such as security camera footage, an officer will still need to respond to collect it.

Reportable crimes include vandalism, hit-and-runs, identify theft, theft with no known suspect and harassment by communication, according to city police. People can also use their phones for nonreportable car crashes, which are crashes with no injuries and no vehicles that need to be towed, Graziano said. If both parties agree, they can upload photos and file a report from the scene, he said.

Reports will be filed and investigated like any other call, he said.

LexisNexis Risk Solutions touts its Coplogic software as a way to eliminate time-consuming processes while improving the accuracy of reports, according to its website.

Although the new technology was in the works prior to COVID-19, Graziano explained it reduces face-to-face contact, protecting both residents and officers from the virus.

The department saw an increase in police reports when it first implemented Coplogic, and Graziano expects another influx as residents use their smartphones. Filing police reports digitally means people can report crimes privately without a police car showing up in front of their homes, he said.

However, Graziano emphasized that the reporting software is only an option, and police will continue responding to any call when someone wants an officer on scene.

“If they want us there, we’re there,” he said.

To file police reports online, visit scrantonpolicedepartment.org/coplogic.

©2020 The Times-Tribune (Scranton, Pa.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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