Palo Alto Police Online Services and Citizen Self Reporting
DO NOT USE THIS PAGE TO REPORT "IN PROGRESS" OR JUST OCCURRED CRIMES, ACCIDENTS or EMERGENCIES. INSTEAD CALL 9-1-1.
The Palo Alto Police Department accepts the following reports from citizens as an alternative officer response. From this page you may access certain forms to download or fill out online such as:
- Abandoned Vehicle
- Confidential Tip
- Employee Commendation
- Employee Complaint
- Shoreline Amphitheatre Noise Complaint (Intended for use by Palo Alto Residents or Businesses ONLY. The Amphitheatre is in the City of Mountain View; if you are not a Palo Alto resident and you have a complaint about noise from the Amphitheatre you should contact the Mountain View Police Department at 650-903-6344).
- Traffic Complaint
- Parking Complaint (Abandoned Vehicle Complaint)
- Traffic Collision
- Certain Crime and Incident Reports (See below)
Please read the instructions and click on the provided links below.
Reporting Crimes and Incidents Online
Due to budget cuts and the elimination of support personnel, we no longer have the staff to complete, review, and process on-line reports as previously handled. In an effort to provide citizens with an opportunity to file a report for the following crimes or incidents, we have created a Citizen’s Crime Report Form which can be downloaded below, or obtained at the Police Department Records Unit front desk. You will need to complete the form with all pertinent information and submit the form in person to the Police Department Records Unit during normal business hours, Monday – Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. At that time, you will receive a case number for your records. Please note, unless the crime you are reporting is part of a crime trend in your area, you will probably not be contacted by an officer or investigator. Additionally, knowingly submitting a false crime report is a misdemeanor under California Penal Code Section 148.5 and is punishable by 6 months, $1,000 fine, or both. Please download the Citizen’s Crime Report Form to report the following Crimes or Incidents if they occurred in the City of Palo Alto and you have no suspect information:
- Annoying/Harassing Phone Calls
- Lost Property
- Misdemeanor Vandalism – Malicious mischief or damage done to your property. Not Graffiti - To report graffiti Vandalism, call the Police Department's non-emergency number (650-329-2413) and request an officer to make a report.
- Petty Theft - The unlawful taking of the personal property of another valued at $950 or less.
- Grand Theft - The unlawful taking of the personal property of another valued at more than $950. If the value of the total property taken is greater than $5,000 dollars, do not use this form. Call the Palo Alto Police Communications Center at 650.329.2413 to report this crime.
Instructions for Citizen’s Crime Report Form
Do not report in progress crimes or Emergencies via this form. Call 9-1-1. Review the previous guidelines above. Form must be submitted in Person.
Click on link below and download the form.
Fill out all pertinent information listed on the report form. Please provide as much descriptive information as possible such as make, model and serial numbers. Please include a dollar amount for all thefts and for vandalized damaged property.
If you are reporting a theft of a Bike, please include the speed, and type of bike, such as Boys/Girls.
If you have more property items then the form allows, you may download the Citizen’s Property Loss Report Form. The Citizen’s Crime Report must be filed in person. Please bring applicable forms to the Police Department located at:
Palo Alto Police Department Records Unit
275 Forest Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94301
Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
If you would like to fill out the Citizen’s Crime Report Form in person, please come to the Palo Alto Police Department Records Unit, at the address above, to obtain the form.
Instructions for Counter Traffic Accident Form
If you have been involved in a non-injury traffic collision where you exchanged names; were the victim of a private property accident with no injury, or suspect you may download the Counter Traffic Accident Form, fill it out and submit it in person to the Palo Alto Police Department Records Unit during normal business hours (Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) The collision must have happened within the City of Palo Alto. Please do not use this form if the collision occurred on a freeway (or off- or on-ramp to a freeway) like Highway 101 or Interstate 280, as they are in the jurisdiction of the California Highway Patrol, not the Palo Alto Police Department. Once the form is filed with us in person, you will be given a report case number for your records. Click on the link below to download the form.
If you would like to fill out the Counter Traffic Collision Form in person, please come to the Palo Alto Police Department Records Unit to obtain the form.
The Palo Alto Police Department provides Cite Sign-Offs to residents of Palo Alto, or to citizens that have received a citation from the Palo Alto Police Department. This service is performed Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Residents may call 650-329-2258, 24 hours a day to report vehicles abandoned or stored on public roadways. Vehicles are checked within three business days. You may also report abandoned vehicles online by clicking in the following link: Abandoned Vehicle Complaint
Make a Confidential Crime Tip
Online Crime Tip Reporting allows citizens to anonymously provide information to the Police Department about suspicious activity and criminal actions within their neighborhoods. The public can also send an anonymous text or e-mail message to firstname.lastname@example.org to report what they are seeing, or to provide information about a case the police may be investigating.
Other Report Forms
- Employee Commendation
- Employee Complaint
- Shoreline Amphitheatre Noise Complaint (Complaints can also be made by phone at: 650-329-2631 - Intended for use by Palo Alto Residents or Businesses ONLY. The Amphitheatre is in the City of Mountain View, if you are not a Palo Alto resident and you have a complaint about noise from the Amphitheatre you should contact the Mountain View Police Department at 650-903-6344).
- Traffic Complaint