FOIA Seeking CPD Crime Incident Data

This request for Chicago Police Department’s crime incident data under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act was filed via email with the Chicago Police Department on Jan 20, 2017. Check back as we will be posting the CPD’s response and any followup from us when we get them. This FOIA is part of our ongoing 2017 campaign to open up the vase troves of hidden data the CPD maintains and keeps from the public.

Please provide the following records in accordance with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act. Please provide the following records in digital format.

  • Provide case level crime incident data for all crime incidents including homicides from 1980-2016 including data related to how the incident is originally coded as it enters the CPD and the final incident classification. Please define each of the tables and fields included in the data requested in this FOIA.
  • If the Chicago Police Department chooses to withhold fields please detail the exact field, what type of data the field holds, and what exemption applies to each field.

 

On February 3, 2017 the Chicago Police Department P056637Responsive denying our request for various reasons including:

  • The department only maintains crime incident data in digital format from 1999 forward.
  • That the department would have to write a new script to pull information out of the database in a format that would collect the original coding of the incident and the final coding of the incident, along with all the fields related to the crime incident itself.

We understand that the department may not maintain data beyond the year 1999 but we absolutely challenge the fact that writing a script to get data out of their database is some how the creation of a new record. We will litigate this all the way to the supreme court. If this logic holds that would mean the public can only access data that the agencies themselves have already written scripts for. Meaning if the agency does not write a script the public cannot access the data. In response to their denial we field the following narrowed request on February 18.

Dane,

Please consider this email a narrowed request under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act.

• Provide case level crime incident data for all crime incidents including homicides from 1999-2016 including data related to how the incident is     originally coded as it enters the CPD and the final incident classification. Please define each of the tables and fields included in the data requested in this FOIA.

• If the Chicago Police Department chooses to withhold fields please detail the exact field, what type of data the field holds, and what exemption applies to each field.

Of course we will let you know what we find out from the CPD related to this request.