vancouver database specialists

City of Bellingham, WA - Police Department


Bellingham, the county seat of Whatcom County, is the last major city before the Washington coastline meets the Canadian border. With a population of about 70,000 and commissioned officers numbering just over 100, its police force operations are typical of hundreds of similar American cities.

The Challenge:

  • Partner in the design and development of a records management system (RMS), the application used to store and manage all police reports and records, including related details for referenced persons and property. The RMS also encompasses information about arrest outcomes, warrants, citations and court orders. Its database serves as the basis for crime analysis and crime statistics reporting to state and federal agencies.

  • Balance the desire for a localized, custom solution with the requirements imposed by the need to interact and interface with a variety of external agencies.

The Solution:

CompuWork worked with the client’s team to develop a finely tuned custom application that reflects the agency’s preferred practices and local business processes while satisfying the requirements for external reporting. Specific tasks performed were:

  • Design and implementation of an appropriate database, including provisions for full-text indexing of report narratives and provisions for BLOB (Binary Large Objects) data, comprised of digital photographs and document scans, for example.

  • Interfacing the RMS to third-party computer-assisted dispatch (CAD) system to pull related dispatch records together with related police reports.

  • Development of an efficient and easy-to-use interface with functionality appropriate to the various user groups, such as patrol officers, records administrators and evidence specialists.

  • Design and implementation of a rich query-by-example (QBE) interface to facilitate complex searching and retrieval operations.

  • Implementation of related Web pages to provide for: 1) publication of releasable police report press summaries; 2) publication of crime statistics by neighborhood; and 3) real-time publication of sex offender details as soon as available. All of this information is available to the public at large via the department’s web site.

Technologies Used:

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2014, Microsoft Visual Studio, Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS), FTP, HTML, XML, ASP.NET.

  • Citrix Metaframe Server (as an alternate deployment).

  • Asymetrix InfoModeler (Visio) used as database design tool, Windows NT / Windows 2000 Server, Win 9x / Windows 2000 Professional / Windows 10 clients.