Regional Crime Analysis Geographic Information System (RCAGIS) (ICPSR 3372)

Principal Investigator(s): United States Department of Justice. Criminal Division Geographic Information Systems Staff. Baltimore County Police Department


The Regional Crime Analysis GIS (RCAGIS) is an Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) MapObjects-based system that was developed by the United States Department of Justice Criminal Division Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Staff, in conjunction with the Baltimore County Police Department and the Regional Crime Analysis System (RCAS) group, to facilitate the analysis of crime on a regional basis. The RCAGIS system was designed specifically to assist in the analysis of crime incident data across jurisdictional boundaries. Features of the system include: (1) three modes, each designed for a specific level of analysis (simple queries, crime analysis, or reports), (2) wizard-driven (guided) incident database queries, (3) graphical tools for the creation, saving, and printing of map layout files, (4) an interface with CrimeStat spatial statistics software developed by Ned Levine and Associates for advanced analysis tools such as hot spot surfaces and ellipses, (5) tools for graphically viewing and analyzing historical crime trends in specific areas, and (6) linkage tools for drawing connections between vehicle theft and recovery locations, incident locations and suspects' homes, and between attributes in any two loaded shapefiles. RCAGIS also supports digital imagery, such as orthophotos and other raster data sources, and geographic source data in multiple projections. RCAGIS can be configured to support multiple incident database backends and varying database schemas using a field mapping utility.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

Study Description


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This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Criminal Division

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    computer aided mapping, crime mapping, crime patterns, geographic information systems, police departments

Data Collection Notes:

As of September 2000 RCAGIS development at the U.S. Department of Justice Criminal Division officially ceased and the program is not supported by the Department of Justice. The final official release of RCAGIS is considered public domain. Interested parties are welcome to download the source code and modify as they like with no restrictions beyond those imposed by the copyright holders of components used in RCAGIS such as ESRI's MapObjects.

While the RCAGIS source code is public domain and the application can be freely distributed, its use does require ESRI's MapObjects (MO) 2.0 software package to run. MapObjects, a set of ActiveX components is not royalty-free and thus RCAGIS cannot be distributed with MapObjects.

RCAGIS uses CrimeStat, a software package that performs spatial statistics for crime analysis as its statistics engine. CrimeStat, developed by Ned Levine and Associates, was written under a grant from the National Institutes of Justice and is free for use by law enforcement agencies. CrimeStat may be downloaded from the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data Web site at

The minimum recommended hardware for this application is a 233 MHz Pentium II class processor with 64 MB of RAM.

RCAGIS has been tested under Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 (service pack 3 and higher), and Windows 2000.



Original ICPSR Release:   2002-05-29


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