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City of Durham Police Crime Reports

This metadata contains information on crime definitions and location obfuscation techniques to protect citizen identification data. Officers responding to incidents have also been redacted for privacy.

1. Crime Definitions:
For reporting purposes, criminal offenses are divided into two major groups: Part I offenses and Part II offenses.
In Part I, the UCR indexes reported incidents in two categories: violent and property crimes. Aggravated assault, forcible rape, murder, and robbery are classified as violent while arson, burglary, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft are classified as property crimes. These are reported via the document named Return A – Monthly Return of Offenses Known to the Police. Part 1 crimes are collectively known as Index crimes, this name is used because the crimes are considered quite serious, tend to be reported more reliably than others, and are reported directly to the police and not to a separate agency (ex- IRS) that doesn't necessarily contribute to the UCR.
In Part II, the following categories are tracked: simple assault, curfew offenses and loitering, embezzlement, forgery and counterfeiting, disorderly conduct, driving under the influence, drug offenses, fraud, gambling, liquor offenses, offenses against the family, prostitution, public drunkenness, runaways, sex offenses, stolen property, vandalism, vagrancy, and weapons offenses.
Two property reports are also included with the Return A. The first is the Property Stolen by Classification report. This report details the number of actual crimes of each type in the Return A and the monetary value of property stolen in conjunction with that crime. Some offenses are reported in greater detail on this report than on the Return A. For example, on the Report A, burglaries are divided into three categories: Forcible Entry, Unlawful Entry – No Force, and Attempted Forcible Entry. On the Property Stolen by Classification report, burglaries are divided into six categories based on location type and the time of the offense. Offenses are counted in residences with offense times of 6 p.m. to 6 a.m., 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Unknown Time and Non-residences with the same three time groupings.
The second property report is the Property Stolen by Type and Value report. The monetary value of both stolen and recovered property are totaled and classified as one of eleven property types:
  • Currency, Notes, Etc.
  • Jewelry and Precious Metals
  • Clothing and Furs
  • Locally Stolen Motor Vehicles
  • Office Equipment
  • Televisions, Radios, Stereos, Etc.
  • Firearms
  • Household goods
  • Consumable goods
  • Livestock
Miscellaneous
The FBI began recording arson rates, as part of the UCR, in 1979. This report details arsons of the following property types:
  • Single Occupancy Residential (houses, townhouses, duplexes, etc.)
  • Other Residential (apartments, tenements, flats, hotels, motels, dormitories, etc.)
  • Storage (barns, garages, warehouses, etc.)
  • Industrial/Manufacturing
  • Other Commercial (stores, restaurants, offices, etc.)
  • Community/Public (churches, jails, schools, colleges, hospitals, etc.)
  • All Other Structures (out buildings, monuments, buildings under construction, etc.)
  • Motor Vehicles (automobiles, trucks, buses, motorcycles, etc.)
  • Other Mobile Property (trailers, recreational vehicles, airplanes, boats, etc.)
  • Other (crops, timber, fences, signs, etc.)

2. Protecting the identification of citizens and officers:

The main reason for applying masking to a data field is to protect data that is classified as personal identifiable data, personal sensitive data or commercially sensitive data, however the data must remain usable for the purposes of undertaking valid test cycles. It must also look real and appear consistent. It is more common to have masking applied to data that is represented outside of a corporate production system. In other words where data is needed for the purpose of application development, building program extensions and conducting various test cycles. It is common practice in enterprise computing to take data from the production systems to fill the data component, required for these non-production environments.

How we obfuscate data through Donut Masking: 

Donut Masking. This technique is similar to random displacement within a circle, but a smaller internal circle is utilized within which displacement is not allowed. In effect, this sets a minimum and maximum level for the displacement. Masked locations are placed anywhere within the allowable area. A slightly different approach to donut masking is the use of a random direction and two random radii: one for maximum and one for minimum displacement. These two techniques only differ slightly in the probability of how close masked locations are placed to the original locations. Both approaches enforce a minimum amount of displacement.

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