Naperville routinely lands on national safest city lists, a cherished accomplishment that has contributed to Naperville also being named one of the best cities in the country to live, raise a family, and retire. Where does that low crime rate and overall sense of safety come from? A high-functioning, proactive law enforcement agency is part of the answer. Community partnership is another critical component.
Residents aware of the types of crimes in their city are more likely to practice situational awareness, report suspicious activity to police, and take proactive steps to avoid victimization. This, in turn, reduces the opportunity for crime and helps prevent criminals from targeting our town.
Fortunately, opportunities for residents to interact with police, learn what’s going on in their community, and partner with law enforcement are abundant in Naperville!
Opportunities to interact with the Naperville Police Department
Every positive interaction between a police officer and a resident provides the opportunity to share information and build trust. Each year, the police department hosts the following free events to enjoy some face-to-face time with residents in a non-emergency situation:
- Chat with the Chief – Multiple chats are held throughout the year at various times and locations throughout Naperville. Residents are invited to stop by these informal open houses to speak with Chief Arres or another member of the police department’s administration about anything that’s on their minds.
- Citizens Police Academy – Two 10-week academies are held each year for adults and one six-week academy is held each summer for youth. These programs give participants an in-depth view of the department and hands-on experience in patrol operations, evidence collection, firearms training, investigations, and more.
- Group presentations/meetings – NPD offers free community presentations and training upon request. Available topics include current crime trends and crime prevention, active shooter response, technology safety, and more.
- National Night Out – A well-attended community kick-off event hosted by NPD typically precedes individual events in more than 40 neighborhoods on National Night Out, all in the name of strengthening the police/community partnership.
- Public Safety Open House – This fall family favorite is a collaboration with the Naperville Fire Department. It features safety information, activities and giveaways, food trucks, and demonstrations by Naperville’s public safety teams.
Opportunities to learn from the Naperville Police Department
The Naperville Police Department places a high value on transparency and regularly shares, communicates, and collaborates with the citizens of Naperville. Here are a few ways residents can receive information from the department:
- Facebook and Twitter – The police department maintains active accounts on these popular social media platforms to provide the public with crime updates, crime prevention information, and department news.
- Press Releases – Anyone can sign up to receive press releases from the City of Naperville, including dozens sent annually by the Naperville Police Department on topics such as recent crimes, arrests, and enforcement campaigns, among others.
- Public Safety Incident Map – See Naperville’s crime and police incidents plotted visually on an interactive map that allows users to customize their desired time frame and location and the types of incidents they’re interested in seeing. The map is updated throughout the day as new reports are approved.
- Open Data Portal – Incidents reported to or by the Naperville Police Department are available as raw datasets on the City of Naperville’s Open Data Portal, updated daily.
- Crime stats – Twice yearly, the Naperville Police Department releases an overview of local crime statistics to the public. These reports are posted on the department’s website and include raw numbers and analysis of current trends.
Opportunities to partner with the Naperville Police Department
Partnership can mean something different to everyone, so Naperville PD offers both big and small opportunities to do their part to help ensure the ongoing safety of the community. Here are a few ways residents can partner with the department:
- Safer Naper – Each month, the Safer Naper campaign educates residents about a different topic, making them partners in preventing crime and enhancing safety within the community. Keep up with the resources and information provided each month on the department’s website and social media channels.
- Lock It or Lose It – Burglary to motor vehicle is one of the most common crimes in Naperville, and in the first half of 2023, 80% were to unlocked vehicles! Lock It or Lose It is an awareness campaign that encourages residents and visitors to lock their vehicles to reduce the opportunity for criminal entry.
- Naperville Crime Stoppers – Crime Stoppers encourages members of the community to assist the police department in the fight against crime by anonymously reporting any information pertaining to a crime by calling (630) 420-6006. Cash rewards are available for tips that lead to an arrest.
- Paws on Patrol – No one knows their neighborhood as well as someone out daily (sometimes multiple times a day) walking their four-legged friend! Paws on Patrol is a dog walker watch program that encourages residents to help reduce crime in Naperville while out “on patrol” in their neighborhood by training them to identify and report suspicious activity to police properly.
- Community Radio Watch – Citizens involved in Community Radio Watch receive specialized training from police personnel and supplement the police force as observers of suspicious or criminal activity. Members report criminal activity, opportunities for criminal activity, and suspicious vehicles/behavior as well as provide security at special events and conduct traffic control and radar patrols.