New online crime reporting tool launches in Surrey

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VANCOUVER — Surrey RCMP is set to become the first detachment to test a new online crime reporting tool on Monday, followed by proposed tests in three other B.C. communities later this summer.

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The RCMP says the pilot project will allow people to report some non-emergency crimes online, freeing up time for frontline personnel to respond to higher priority calls and emergencies.

According to a statement, the B.C. RCMP receives more than a million calls for service every year, amounting to nearly half the total received by the RCMP across Canada.

Residents of the four pilot communities will be able to use the online tool to report crimes such as theft or vandalism amounting to less than $5,000, provided there are no items involving personal identity, firearms, or license plates.

Chief Superintendent Dave Attfield says several B.C. RCMP detachments tested the tool a few years ago, and improvements have been made since then.

He says if the system is successful in Surrey, then Ridge Meadows, Kelowna and Richmond, the tool will be used in communities across B.C. that are policed by the RCMP.