Nearly a year in the making, the Forest Park Police Department launched its own website last week to increase communication between the department and residents. With the new site, www.forestparkpolice.net, residents can pay parking and red light tickets online, report a crime, learn more about the police department and track current crime investigations.
“We wanted to be able to interact with the residents and provide information on a timely basis,” said Police Chief Jim Ryan.
The site also features crime statistics that can be downloaded on a daily basis. There is also a regional crime map that charts the criminal activity in Oak Park, River Forest, Elmwood Park and Forest Park.
“We started that as an initiative awhile ago to see where burglaries are coming up,” Ryan said. Now residents, too, can access it “so they can research what kind of crime patterns are going on.”
Information on wanted criminals and major suspects will also be posted consistently on the site.
“We want to get information out to the community as far as what’s going on and what we’re looking for,” Ryan said.
Along with the history of the police department, the site features a breakdown of the department with descriptions of the various divisions, as well as contact information for individual officers.
For those interested in becoming a police officer, there are links to the eligibility requirements, as well as the Explorer Program for those between ages 14 and 20.
“There are also different pictures and videos to explain what the police officers are doing,” Ryan said.
A section dedicated to Frequently Asked Questions also provides information about calling 911, curfew times, traffic stops, house checks during vacations, reporting a missing person and getting fingerprints taken.
Additionally, there is information about the Crime Free Multi-Housing Program and the Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports system.
“It’s going to look pretty sharp,” Ryan said.