Calls for service by the numbers: People's City Mission, Walmart among top places where people call 911

Published: Jan. 14, 2020 at 6:48 PM CST
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On June 21, 2018, Lincoln Police were called to the Walmart on North 27th street 19 times.

Records show 18 of those were for shoplifting.

No other day between the beginning of 2017 and the end of 2019 saw that many calls from Walmart, but data shows there were few days that timeframe where police didn't get a call from the store.

This data is just a small slice of records obtained by 10/11.

The records show every call for service, or every time an officer is dispatched to a location, in Lincoln for the last three years.

They detail the date a call is made, where the call is to, what the call was about and much more.

Over those three years, LPD received more than 350,000 calls for service.

The most common call for service is to Bryan West Hospital with 3,837 total calls.

Calls for service do not necessarily mean emergency calls.

Most of those calls fall into the category of "other" which Officer Erin Spilker describes as a catch-all for calls that don't fall under one of their categories or ends up not being a police matter at all.

However, the department also took 414 reports of assault, 348 disturbance calls and 171 alcohol-related calls at the hospital.

Spilker said most of those reports at the hospital come from patients who report they are victims of a crime after seeking emergency treatment.

The second most common place where 911 is called is LPD's main headquarters with 3,291 calls.

Spilker said that's not a shock at all, as many people come to the station to file police reports instead of doing it at the location of the incident. The top types of calls reported there are "other," disturbances, frauds and missing persons.

The third most common place where calls came from is the People's City Mission. Most of those calls are classified as "other," but there are also hundreds of disturbances, trespassing reports and alcohol-related reports.

"The Mission doesn't want to close their doors, especially in colder months," Spilker said. "Sometimes that means they're letting people in who may be intoxicated, who they may not let in weather permitting which can lead to more calls."

The fourth most common place 911 is called is the city of Lincoln itself.

Records show 1,749 911 calls regarded something like a fraud, theft or drug-related issue that the caller didn't know or wouldn't give a specific location.

The fifth most common place police are called brings us back to Walmart on North 27th street.

A shoplift was reported at Walmart 731 times over the last three years, and police were called to the North Lincoln store a total of 1,729 times over the last three years.

Spilker said these five locations give a pretty good snapshot of where the most calls come from, and locations police are frequenting.

"But just because we know there's going to be more calls from there, it doesn't take away from all the other places we may get calls from in the city," Spilker said.

While these numbers are high, they still make up less than four percent of all the calls made in the city.

"Anywhere there's a lot of people, there's going to be more calls coming in," Spilker said.

Though they're not necessarily trying to cut these numbers down.

"We're always on board for lowering call numbers, but we only want to lower them if the need lowering," she said.

10/11 now also looked into the most common types of calls police get.

The vast majority, 93,111, fall into that "other" category.

Disturbances, traffic calls, accidents and suspicious activity round out the rest of the top five most common types of calls.

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