Palo Alto Police Launch New Online Reporting System

Published on December 07, 2020

Palo Alto, CA The Palo Alto Police Department is pleased to announce that effective today, it is launching a new system to allow members of the public to file police reports online for a wide array of minor crimes and non-injury traffic collisions.

The system, accessible via a link at www.cityofpaloalto.org/onlinereports, allows residents and visitors to report crimes without suspect information that occurred in Palo Alto.  Such crimes include:

  • Auto burglary or thefts from vehicles
  • Vandalism of personal property (if not classified as a hate crime)
  • Lost property
  • Harassing phone calls (hang-ups, obscene language, etc.)
  • Minor traffic collisions (non-injury, property damage only)
  • Hit and run non-injury traffic collisions
  • Thefts of bicycles
  • Thefts of vehicle parts (such as a catalytic converter or hood ornament)
  • Identity theft involving credit card fraud
  • Phone scams
  • Child custody order violation
  • Shoplifting where no prosecution is desired
  • Traffic complaint

After a police officer reviews and approves the online submission, the reporting party is notified via e-mail and receives a link to retrieve a copy of the approved report.  If further investigation is required, an officer will contact the reporting party via e-mail or phone.  The reporting party can also use the system to add additional information to an approved online report, or to an existing police report previously taken by an officer.

The new online reporting system is accessible around-the-clock, allowing flexibility for residents and visitors to report crime at a time that is convenient for them.  It provides a way for individuals to make reports from the safety and comfort of their own home during the current global health emergency.  It also allows patrol officers to focus on the immediate needs of the community, remaining available to respond to urgent calls and spending their time investigating crimes with suspect information or patrolling to deter criminal activity altogether.  The use of the system will also allow public safety dispatchers to focus on priority and emergency calls.  All reports submitted online are integrated into our existing records system, such that officers, detectives, and crime analysts can still accurately track crime trends and deploy resources accordingly.

The system, which is operated by LexisNexis Risk Solutions, is accessible via any Internet-enabled device.  In addition to visiting www.cityofpaloalto.org/onlinereports, individuals can also call (833) 290-3185 and enter a phone number to receive a text link to begin the online reporting process directly on their Internet-enabled mobile device.

The new online reporting system should not be used for in-progress incidents, serious crimes, or minor crimes where there is suspect information that could lead to an arrest.  For those cases, call 9-1-1 in an emergency, or call our 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413 if it is not an emergency.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voice mail to (650) 383-8984.

For more information about the Palo Alto Police Department, visit our website at www.papd.org

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