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Comport: Open Police Data in Indianapolis and Beyond

After a year of learning and iterating, we were excited to launch Indianapolis’ Police Open Data website. In addition to opening data collected in the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department’s professional standards software database, the site includes data visualizations and contextual information about

The data is also on the recently-launched Indianapolis Regional Data Portal.

Community Preview

We partnered with the civic tech volunteers of Open Indy Brigade to host a community preview at a local community college. Community attendees ranged from technologists and open data experts to students and community advocates. We were happy to see attendees create and discuss new data analysis during the event, such as a dashboard that explores reasons for use of force and the days which incidents happen.

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DPS Director David Wantz and IMPD Major and data expert David Robinson speak with a community member.

Indianapolis [After a year of learning and iterating, we were excited to launch Indianapolis’ Police Open Data website. In addition to opening data collected in the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department’s professional standards software database, the site includes data visualizations and contextual information about

The data is also on the recently-launched Indianapolis Regional Data Portal.

Community Preview

We partnered with the civic tech volunteers of Open Indy Brigade to host a community preview at a local community college. Community attendees ranged from technologists and open data experts to students and community advocates. We were happy to see attendees create and discuss new data analysis during the event, such as a dashboard that explores reasons for use of force and the days which incidents happen.

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DPS Director David Wantz and IMPD Major and data expert David Robinson speak with a community member.

Indianapolis](http://www.indy.gov/eGov/City/DPS/Pages/director.aspx) spoke about Indy’s commitment to transparency and accountability, and Denice Ross of the White House Police Data Initiative joined via video chat from DC to praise Indy’s participation in the program. Experts on the datasets were also present to answer the community’s questions: IMPD Major David Robinson and Director of the Citizens’ Police Complaint Office Laura White shared technical knowledge and details on how the city currently uses the data.

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Denice Ross of the White House Police Data Initiative calls in from Washington, D.C. to present on Indy’s participation in the program.

Director White believes opening the data has already made a difference in community relations: “The police open data portal gives the public dynamic access to never before shared data with the opportunity to provide immediate feedback to the Department of Public Safety. This is a great preview of community collaboration with open data to address the holistic issues of our community.”

We’ve always said it’s not about opening the data, rather it’s about the conversations and community change that can come out of seeing and understanding the data. The community had three big questions about the future of this work:

  • How can we get more data like this?
  • How might we measure the impact of opening this data?
  • How can we keep this conversation going?

The Open Indy Brigade will partner with Laura White to foster continued work on and conversation about the data. While our Fellowship with Indianapolis is technically over, we’re currently working on how Comport can be a tool to help other cities open their police data. Indianapolis took exciting steps towards police transparency and accountability, and we look forward to seeing the trend spread.