Peoria Police launch new platform to increase transparency

Published: Nov. 14, 2023 at 8:39 PM CST
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PEORIA (25News Now) - Peoria Police have launched a new tab on their website in an effort to increase transparency with the community.

It’s called the ‘Know More No More’ campaign, hoping to build trust, peace, and unity within the city of Peoria.

“Our thought, desire, and plan are that the more the community knows, they will get involved, and we will have no more,” Mary Peterson, the Police Department’s Community Relations Crime Prevention Manager said.

The Peoria Police Department spent about a year creating the ‘Know More No More’ online tool. It provides years of data on gun violence, homicides, and car theft in the River City.

For example, they have the number of shooting incidents, gunshot victims, and homicides in comparison to last year readily available.

“The ‘Know More No More’ campaign is really the umbrella of everything we’re going to do moving forward in the police department when we talk about community engagement when we talk about enforcement, when we talk about resources, when we talk about really engaging the community,” Peoria Police Chief Eric Echevarria said.

In a release from Peoria Police, they state that their theory is that by being transparent with real-time accurate information, the department will build strong relationships based on trust.

Chief Echevarria says providing a one-stop shop where the community can get the information they need to push resources, implement more programs, and apply for grants, might help engage the community in the change.

“If you know this information, now you can take action on this information,” Chief Echevarria said. “The problems that we’re seeing are not just a police problem; these are a community problem, and it’s going to take a village. It’s going to take our whole community to help reduce these numbers and change the narrative of what we’re seeing in our community.”

The data on the website dates back to 2012. The Peoria Police Department’s Crime and Management Analyst, Jacob Moushon, says it shows an increase in crime, and when people see it, he hopes they will want to get involved.

“We want to get that out to the public, not just to show them what the police are doing but because I don’t think people really understand what’s happening in Peoria,” Moushon said. “They might know what’s happening on their block but they don’t understand really what’s happening in Peoria as a whole.”

Moushon says the goal is to have fresh information published on the website within 24 hours of the incident while also considering police officer safety.

Moushon adds while this year’s homicide number is not the highest they’ve ever seen, they are still significantly high.

“I fear that we become accustomed to this level of violence so that it doesn’t shock us unless we have three or four people shot or five or a juvenile shot, that’s when it has shock value when in reality, the amount of gun violence we have here should shock you consistently,” Moushon said.

The department is using billboards, posters, buses and more to tell the community about their website addition.

On the tab, you can find headshots for leaders within the department and their contact information.

The platform also has a feed of their Facebook posts available for those that don’t regularly use the social media site.

There is also a survey asking people what they think of the ‘Know More No More’ campaign and how it can be improved.

Click here for the new tab.