South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Austin Vaught
Contributing Writer 

Burgh's Eye View shows city data streams on web map

Carrick block watch hears neighborhood updates

 

Burgh's Eye View presents multiple city data streams on an interactive map. Residents can learn about criminal incidents, check the status of 311 reports or even rent city facilities.

Carrick residents can learn about criminal incidents, check on the status of 311 reports, and even rent city facilities thanks to Burgh's Eye View, a city website that presents multiple city data streams on an interactive map.

A tutorial of Burgh's Eye View was presented by Geoffrey Arnold from Pittsburgh's Department of Innovation and Performance at February's Carrick / Overbrook Crime Watch meeting last Monday in the Concord K5 auditorium.

The website, released in 2016, allows anyone to view an interactive map of Pittsburgh and instantly see public safety data, 311 requests, building code violations, building permits, and city facility information all in a single place. The website is accessible on both computers and mobile devices.

Mr. Arnold said if a resident is concerned about a recent string of robberies, they can log on to Burgh's Eye View and filter the map by thefts to see a visual representation of where specific incidents occurred between a selected timeframe.

When a criminal incident is selected, the user can read about the specific charges of the offense, whether it's been cleared by police, the date and time, and the nearest intersection. The map does not display exact addresses in order to protect the privacy of crime victims.

In addition to viewing datasets, residents can also submit 311 requests and rent city facilities directly from the website.

The data for Burgh's Eye View is provided by the Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center and is updated nightly.

A resident asked Mr. Arnold if the website is able to show the real-time status of 311 reports. Mr. Arnold confirmed that the website does not.

Another resident asked if the website displays overdoses. Mr. Arnold said it is possible to filter the criminal incidents by overdoses; however, it ultimately depends on how police file the incident.

Residents can launch the Burgh's Eye View application on their computer or mobile device by visiting pittsburghpa.gov and clicking on the Burgh's Eye View logo on the right sidebar.

Following the presentation, Zone 3 police officer Christine Luffey addressed the shooting homicide that occurred around 3 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 5 in the 200 block of Copperfield Avenue.

A Carrick man allegedly shot and killed the victim, 28-year-old Donald Ketter Jr., from inside a rideshare vehicle after leaving the Carrick Lit Club on Copperfield Avenue and then forced the driver to flee the scene.

Police were able to speak to the driver along with other witnesses and identify and arrest the suspect Derek Vasos of Maytide Street.

Three prostitution arrests also occurred on Brownsville Road. On January 17 plainclothes police officers observed a female stumbling and attempting to flag down vehicles. When they approached her, the woman proceeded to sexually proposition the officers. She was arrested around 1:20 p.m.

The same female was arrested again on January 19 at 8:30 p.m. by Pittsburgh Police's Narcotics and Vice Unit. Police were investigating in the area when the woman allegedly motioned the vehicle to stop and made the officers a sexual proposition involving $40.

A third prostitution arrest occurred when a female plainclothes police officer was walking in the 1100 block of Brownsville Road. A man approached the officer and offered $20 in exchange for a sexual act and was arrested by detectives.

A man was stabbed three times after leaving a tavern in the 2300 block of Brownsville Road. The victim was transported to Mercy Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery. Police are investigating.

A Carrick man was assaulted while walking Parkfield Street on January 21 at 9:30 p.m. by four males. The victim was dragged into a car and repeatedly assaulted. The victim suffered black eyes, stitches, a broken nose, and bruised ribs. Arrest warrants have been issued for the suspects.

Following the crime report, a resident complained about excessive panhandling at the intersection of Route 88 and Route 51. Officer Luffey advised the resident to call 911 if panhandlers become aggressive or start to tap on windows.

Another resident complained about kids loitering and asking for money in the Carrick Shopping Center.

Officer Luffey also noted a significant number of theft from automobile reports and reminded residents to lock their cars and remove all valuables.

"Every day I look through the police reports and there are at least a couple of [theft from auto reports]," officer Luffey said. "Please do not leave your valuables in your vehicle."

Officer Luffey also reminded residents the city of Pittsburgh offers a free spay and neuter program for up to five animals a year to all city residents. Applications are available to download at pittsburghpa.gov/animalcontrol.

"We're going to try to keep the pet population down," officer Luffey said.

Officer Luffey also announced that there were 71 people in attendance at the meeting.

"It's been about five years that we've been doing it and you've been strong," officer Luffey said. "This is one block watch that has not been broken."

Following the crime report, City Councilwoman Natalia Rudiak provided several. According to the Councilwoman, her office is still working hard to secure the Berg Place apartment building and Saint Basil Church and move forward with new development opportunities.

Councilwoman Rudiak also announced there is $30,000 in the city budget to address lighting and amenity needs in Philips Park. As a result, she is looking for volunteers to form a group called the Friends of Phillips Park. The group would be responsible for naming trails and planning future amenity upgrades.

Additionally, there are current plans to redevelop the entryway of Philips Park to make it appear more inviting.

Councilwoman Rudiak also said she has been speaking with a City of Pittsburgh data analyst about doing a crime analysis to determine the impact the Carrick / Overbrook Block Watch has had on the community.

According to the Councilwoman, initial discussions indicate there has been a steady decrease in criminal incidents over the last few years.

"While overdoses have been going up, crime is going down," the councilwoman said.

The next Carrick / Overbrook Block Watch meeting will be on Monday, March 6 at 7 p.m. in the Concord K5 auditorium.

 

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