Another incarnation of Google Maps: IncidentLog.com. The site takes preliminary police reports from several dozen participating jurisdictions and maps their locations and details. Here’s the report for Berkeley (Google defeats my feeble efforts to make a screenshot of one of their maps — hey, sounds like a weekend project). Anyway, it’s a useful display if your thinking about what the ne’er-do-wells are doing in your town (we recently had a couple of daylight stickups within a block of our place). The limitation right now is that so few localities are listed, maybe because relatively few offer readily usable data.
OK, so poking around, I see a reference to ChicagoCrime.org, which does essentially the same thing as the IncidentLog does elsewhere. ChicagoCrime has a new Google Maps gadget that essentially combines the routemaking feature on Gmaps Pedometer and the site’s crime database. The resulting tool lets you plot a route anywhere in the city, set the parameters for time and type of crime, then get a Google map showing all the bad stuff that happens along the path of your evening constitutional. When you reach a danger spot, you can break into a run, resulting in fitness and personal safety benefits, or at least a good sweat.