In the investigation of a crime, all kinds of scientific and technological procedures are used, such as fingerprinting, DNA techniques and the so-called Crime Mapping. This concept does not normally apply to a specific offense, but rather to a set of criminal actions. In this way, police bodies identify areas where illegal acts have taken place.
This type of map has a dual purpose: to fight and prevent crime. Of course, the format of a current Crime Mapping is presented in digital form through a computer program based on a system of information geographically.
A cartographic tool to improve safety in cities
The signaling of crimes in a geographic space is generally carried out by the judicial authorities, from which they provide information to the police to better organize their crime-fighting strategy.
The basic features of any map of the crime are as follows: representation of an area as it is in reality and a series of complementary data (satellite photos and aerial images through GPS systems). Also, these representations can be subdivided into areas (for example, a map for each type of crime). All of the accumulated geographic information can be translated into concrete crime data in the area. In this sense, the police determine which specific area is a conflict zone or “ risk area ”, as well as the geographic patterns of criminals and the areas that should be more closely watched. Crime Mapping
As in any other map, what is important is not what appears by itself, but how it is interpreted. For this reason, police forces have specialized units to understand crimes in the context of the geographic framework . It should be noted that the analysts of these maps interpret quantitative data (eg the number of car thefts) and qualitative data (eg the type of offender).
From a historical point of view
The use of maps to analyze social problems is not a recent phenomenon. In fact, in the 19th century, some infectious diseases were studied using maps, as this way I could find a connection between geographic space and the disease (for example, around 1850, in the city of London, there were numerous cases of cholera and in this way a correlation can be established between the infected water wells and the development of the epidemic in the city).
In the current police investigation, paper maps with colored tacks are at risk of extinction. The Crime Mapping as a police tool began to be used in the 1960s and with subsequent technological advances, software was developed to digitize geographic information.