Continue reading, and you will see the pledge-like declaration: "The Albany Police Department would like to help keep our community informed about recent police activity."
That's when you are led to believe that you are about to easily access public information (and all from the comfort of wherever you are accessing the web from: Home, work, a friends house, a babysitting job, who knows?): "Simply click on the link below for more information."
That last statement is far from accurate.
Then there is some disclaimer that says: "Please note that this is not a complete, full listing of all police activity. Content that is not released includes, but is not limited to, ongoing investigations, some incidents involving
juveniles,..." blah, blah, blah.
Then, "the switch": "Another useful resource is also www.crimereports.com . Enter "Albany, CA" in the search box, then click on the small icons to read about each incident."
They don't even tell you that www.crimereports.com is your ONLY online resource for keeping abreast of police activity, (or criminal activity, for that matter) in the city of Albany!
Then, a (misleading) link: "View Archived News"
And, below that, an affirmation of the disappointing lack of non-"Archived News": "No news items in this view."
If you are still determined to find that so-called public information, you might decide to click on the misleading "View Archived News" link...
And: Voilà! You are taken to a page that looks exactly like the one that I just described to you... Except that instead of the misleading "View Archived News" link, instead there is an equally misleading "View Current News" link, which will lead you to the page that you were on when you first started your mission to simply see the "Police Bulletin".
Now, feel free to pull your hair out. OR: continue your quest over at www.crimereports.com...
On a recent Albany Patch Police Calls piece, the body of the article is preceded by this: "The following information was obtained from the Albany Police Department's daily incident log and its arrest reports."
That particular article lists incidents that occurred on March 11 and 12. The Albany Patch article describes six incidents from the police logs from March 11th. However, www.crimereports.com only lists two incidents that occurred on March 11th. To be fair, both the article and crimereports.com list the same incident (an auto break-in and theft of property from said vehicle), twice.
So, the crimereports.com website actually only has one incident listed for March 11. The Albany Patch article lists eleven incidents from the police logs on March 12. Of those eleven incidents, crimereports.com lists two.
Although, crimereports.com does list one incident (a robbery on the 600 block of Liberty) that the Albany Patch article does not. It should be noted that the crimereports.com website seems to only list those crimes that ordinary citizens (as opposed to law enforcement personnel) report to their website.
After the Albany Patch article, it says: "The Albany police call logs and arrest log may be viewed at the Albany Police Department at 1000 San Pablo Avenue."
Which, I'm guessing, is where Albany Patch had to go to get the incidents reported in that story.
My question is: Why has the Albany Police Department stopped posting the police logs on the city website? I remember a time (not even two years ago) when anybody with internet access could go to the City of Albany website and view/download the current and the archived police logs. Now, unless someone is able to take the time to make the trip all the way to the city building at 1000 San Pablo Ave. in Albany, they are no longer able to access this previously easily available public information. What gives?
***Editor's note: Albany Patch does in fact go down to the Albany police station to collect the police logs mentioned. In addition, we are not allowed to make copies of these logs — we have to take pictures of them on our camera phones.