Albertans who want to report a non-emergency crime or check out the crime statistics for their area can now look no further than their phones thanks to the Alberta RCMP's new app.
On Friday Jan. 7, the Alberta RCMP officially launched its mobile app, which allows users to access varied information from their phones.
“We've heard from Albertans across the province. They wanted an easy way to report some crimes online,” said Chief Supt. Peter Tewfik, the officer in charge of the Alberta RCMP’s community safety and well-being branch.
Users can access news, crime reporting, detachment locations, crime mapping and statistics, and a map for initiatives such as Project lock Up. The app can also link users with partner law enforcement services, mental-health supports, Crime Stoppers, and Alberta RCMP social media accounts.
During the Zoom press conference, Tewfik said the app “will not replace existing online tools, but will supplement current web content and consolidate information into one mobile source.
“Our intent with this app is to help remove barriers in accessing important information that, while already available online, is now available in one convenient place — literally at your fingertips,” said Tewfik.
Tewfik stressed Albertans will not be able to report an emergency situation through the app, and if a person witnesses a crime in progress, they must call 911.
Crimes such as non-emergency property crimes are an example of a those that can be reported online through the app.
Tewfik said crimes reported through the app still go through to their callback unit and police officers will respond to those calls.
“They actually ... process, investigate, and respond to those calls that can be reported through the app, but quite correctly it's not intended for emergency calls. That's still, 911 is still the correct number to call,” said Tewfik.
The app will not track users or monitor users in any way, however, for certain applications, such as if a user chooses to report a crime online through the crime-reporting portal, that user must manually enter some personal information as part of the crime-reporting process, said Tewfik.
“But it isn't being automatically tracked in any way,” he said.
Tewfik said the app was developed as a means for Albertans to stay engaged with the RCMP across the province.
“The app is intended to give users the opportunity to stay connected to local law enforcement and policing initiatives. It is the Alberta RCMP's hope that this app will better inform and support the communities we serve.”