Map FAQ

There are two icon-based maps - the 9-1-1 Incident Response Map, the Police Report Map that display police information. 

The 9-1-1 Incident Response Map, is a snapshot of the last 48 hours of Police and Fire dispatches throughout the city. As soon as an incident is considered safe to close, it will populate the system. This depends on officer and citizen safety issues, scene security and the sensitive nature of ongoing investigations. In some cases it may be a few hours before a scene can be considered closed, and in other cases it may be nearly real-time. The information for this map comes directly through the Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system. This map is the quickest option for finding out about sirens you may have heard, or an incident going on nearby within a short timeframe.

The Police Report Map is based on initial police reports taken by officers when responding to incidents around the city. The information enters our Records Management System (RMS) and is then transmitted out to the map. This information and its corresponding map icons will populate the map within 6 to 12 hours after the report is filed into the system. Within 2-3 days some of the narratives (Homicides, Assaults, Robberies and Burglaries) will include additional detail. The data for this map are archived and can be searched across months and weeks. It is a great way to get an idea of the ongoing event patterns in your neighborhood in a way that is more searchable.

There is a different system that populates each map, the 9-1-1 Incident Response Map is powered by Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) and the Police Reports Map is powered by the Records Management System (RMS).

CAD and RMS have some slightly different ways of categorizing incidents. For example, in CAD you have call types that include Mental Health" and "Suspicious Circumstances" but these same categories are not used in the RMS system.If you directly compare the two maps, the vast majority of the icons will be the same, but where there are differences, this is the reason why.

Some police reports can include multiple offenses. For example, suppose an officer responds to a report of trespassing. Then at the scene, he discovers the person trespassing also has as a warrant out, which prompts an arrest. This would then show up both as a trespass and as a warrant arrest. An icon would display for both offenses, but they would share the same report.

The specific icons displayed on the map depend on the order they are selected on the left-hand panel. So - using the trespassing/warrant example - if you "turn off" arrests but still have trespassing "turned on," the incident will still show as a trespass on the map.

You can make a request for an initial police report, a collision report or a clearance letter without going through a public disclosure request.  These reports do not include more than a basic narrative and a few supplemental reports. 

Public Request Unit - Front Counter Services

The Public Request Unit handles requests involved parties (Victims, complainants and their legal representatives.) 

You will receive your report more quickly than a Public Disclosure Request, but the reports will have less detail. 

  • Reports take approximately 5-7 business days, from the date of the incident, to become available for release. 
  • If the report is available for release, you can pick it up in person the same day at the front counter of SPD Headquarters. 
  • If the report is not yet available, you can still make a request - the request will be held until it is ready.  It will be sent to you in the method you specific (email, mail or fax).

You can request a report from the Public Request Unit the following ways: 

Email SPDRequest@seattle.gov

Fax (206) 684-5240

Mail - SPD Public Request Unit, 610 5th Ave. PO Box 34986, Seattle WA 98124

In Person - at the front counter of Seattle Police Headquarters

Request on Behalf of Someone Else

If you are requesting a report on behalf of a victim or complainant, you must provide the following to obtain copies of reports:

  • Businesses -  Request in writing, on business letterhead, listing the case number. 
  • Attorneys - Request in writing, on business letterhead, listing the case number and client's name. 

  • Legal Guardians - Photo ID of the victim/complainant, or paperwork listing legal representation. 
  • Next of Kin -  Copy of death certificate of the victim. 
  • Parents or Guardians - Can request a report, on the behalf of a minor.
  • Reports  - Can be requested on someone else's behalf, if you have a copy of their photo ID and/or written authorization (i.e. your family member is in the hospital, you can make a request with a copy of their photo ID.)

Public Disclosure Request - Records Request Center

For more detailed reports available to the public, reports including additional types of records (such as audio or video), or arrest reports and DUIs you can make a Public Disclosure Request through the Records Request Center.  This will be handled by the Public Disclosure Unit.

Reports Available Online

General Offense (GO) Reports with limited information in PDF format are available for almost most crimes reported to SPD. These reports are made available within 8 hours after the event is closed. 

The dates are based on the occurrence of the incident. If the exact date of the incident is unknown (i.e. coming back from vacation and finding your house has been burglarized) the incident will be given a date range. When this happens, you will see incidents that overlay the dates of your search.

If you see information about a crime you were involved in and believe the information is inaccurate - please contact the followup detective in your case and talk to them directly about the information.

If you are concerned that a report is online and want it removed entirely, contact SPD Legal Unit at 206-233-5141 to discuss this on a case by case basis. In most cases we will need to adhere to the Public Records Act and leave the report online.