how to write a police report on robbery

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How to Report a Crime in Progress

How to report a non-emergency crime.

Some cases that do not require an officer to come to your location can be made over the phone. This saves officers time and keeps them available for higher priority calls. To make a report over the phone, please call case desk at (316) 268-4221 . Cases that can be made over the phone do not have any evidence to collect, do not have a suspect on scene, and do not need an officer to prevent a crime from occurring. Examples of cases that can be made over the phone include:

Reports can also be made at any of the patrol substations. Each one is open from 8am - 5pm, Monday - Friday, and the contact info for each one is listed below:

How to Report Traffic Problems

Traffic problems such as street/traffic lights out, street signs missing, or potholes and pavement can be directed to [email protected] or (316) 268-4448 . If a traffic light is out, please include the intersection or address that it is at and the pole number if possible. The pole number is in black and white, and will be in the following format: A12345.

You can also use an online form to report street/traffic maintenance, stormwater maintenance, sewer maintenance and water maintenance.

Report an Issue

How to Report a Wanted Person

How to report an anonymous crime tip.

Anonymous crime tips are handled through Crime Stoppers. You can also submit a crime tip to the Wichita Police Department.

Wichita/Sedgwick County Crime Stoppers WPD All Crimes Tip  

How to Report a Compliment of an Officer

The Wichita Police Department is committed to rewarding its members for commendable performance. The Department recognizes its members who receive citizen praise for their performance through Commendable Performance Reports and other awards. These commendations become part of the employee's personnel file. If you wish to commend a member of the Wichita Police Department for a "job well done," you may either call that member's supervisor, write a letter to the Chief of Police or send an email.

Employees of the Wichita Police Department take great pride in their work, and they appreciate the gratitude expressed by citizens.

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How to Report an Complaint on an Officer

Citizens having a complaint about any member of the Wichita Police Department are encouraged to first contact that member's Bureau Commander or immediate supervisor. Most complaints can be resolved by the supervisor, who will determine the appropriate action to be taken after investigating the complaint. If the complaint is of a more serious nature, the supervisor will take an initial statement from the complainant and refer the matter to the Professional Standards Bureau for a formal investigation.

Citizens wishing to make a complaint directly to the Professional Standards Bureau should call (316) 268-4256 to make an appointment. Complaints to Professional Standards are generally taken in person. A representative of the Professional Standards Bureau will meet with you privately and conduct a taped interview. A complaint affidavit will also be completed, to document the facts of the complaint and allegations. The complaint will then be investigated by the Bureau, and the results will be forwarded to the Chief of Police. A letter will be sent to notify you of the findings in the investigation.

Citizens are encouraged to make complaints of inappropriate behavior or misconduct by any member of the Wichita Police Department; however, all complaints must be made in good faith. Your complaint will be received in a professional manner, and you will be expected to conduct yourself the same way. Unruly or inappropriate behavior on your part will not be tolerated. Should the investigation determine that the person or persons acting as complainants or witnesses made statements during the course of the investigation that he/she knew to be false, the Department may pursue criminal charges against the person or persons. Civil action against a untruthful complainant may also be pursued by the employee who is the subject of a false complaint.

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How to write a burglary crime report.

how to write a police report on robbery

Being the victim of a burglary can be stressful and upsetting. It can be confusing to know what to do if such an event occurs. After calling the police, it is important to write a burglary crime report that lists all of the important information surrounding the crime. A burglary crime report can be very helpful to the police when they complete their own report, and your insurance company may need the report as well. Of course, the crime report that you write should not replace the official report from the police department.

List the time and place of the burglary, even if the time is just an estimate. Include the property address where the burglary took place, and, more specifically, say which part of the property was burgled.

Mention the name and contact information of the person who discovered the burglary. Include the relationship of the person to the property--for example, this may be the property owner, a visitor or a worker. This is important so that the police or insurance agency can contact this person if more information is needed.

Describe the condition of the property when the burglary was discovered. Include the following: the time it was discovered, how it was discovered, what everything looked like and other information. Be very specific and include as many details as possible. Also, describe any damage to the property or items at the property. Include an estimated cost to repair the damage and any pre-existing damage to the property that is not related to the burglary. If there are any burglary-related injuries, be sure to mention that as well.

List the items that were taken. Include lots of detail in the list, such as the name of each item, when it was purchased, a description of the item and other information, such as serial or product numbers, if available. Also, include an estimated value for each item taken and a total value for all items.

Provide names and contact information for everyone involved and for anyone with access to the property: the property owner, other household members, all workers (if it is a business) and others. And, of course, the name and contact information of the person writing the report is needed.

Take photos of everything to include with the report. This is essential in assessing damage and providing an overall description of what happened.

Organize the report in sections according to the information in Steps 1-5. Include photos in the section where they are needed to illustrate the text. Place a heading at the top of each section so that the report is easy to read.

Write in clear, direct and professional language. Include only the facts--do your best to leave out emotion, and try not to assume or draw illogical conclusions. Do not use slang or abbreviations when writing a crime report. Be specific and include lots of detail.

Erica Sweeney is a freelance writer and editor based in Little Rock, Ark. She has a master's in journalism from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Her work has been published at, Arkansas Times, Aging Arkansas and Arkansas Business.

Related Articles

Professional report writing for law enforcement officers, type 2 sample report.

This Type 2 sample report adds the officer’s investigation to the “who, what, when, where, why” that’s required in a basic Type 1 report. ( Click here to learn about all four types of reports.)

You’ll write a Type 2 report any time you took action at the scene: Searching for the point of entry, or taking fingerprints, or doing a sobriety test—any action you used to gather information.

Here are the characteristics of a Type 2 report:

Here’s a sample Type 2 report:

I met with Frank Gaines, the homeowner who had reported the burglary.

Gaines told me he lives alone. He was out of town on business when the burglary happened. He had left on Monday, April 5, at approximately 6:15 p.m. and returned on Friday morning at approximately 8:45 a.m. Because he used his car for the trip, there was no car in his carport when he was gone. He said because he left during daylight, he hadn’t thought to leave any lights burning. He is a sales representative for Pfizer, and many people know that he often does business from home and makes sales trips.

When he returned from his trip, he saw a broken window over the kitchen table.

The following items are missing from his home office:

I lifted latent fingerprints from the desk in Gaines’ home office. In the kitchen I saw fragments of glass on the floor. The broken window is about 4½ feet high by 6 feet across. I walked through the rest of the house and saw no other evidence of the break-in. All doors and all other windows are intact.

I went to the back yard and saw that the broken kitchen window is about three feet from the ground. I photographed the broken window from inside the kitchen and from the back yard.

Gaines told me that he is friendly with a retired neighbor who lives next door, and she keeps an eye on his house when he is away on business. I questioned the neighbor (Anna Morgan, 2164 Powell Street). She told me:

I suggested that Gaines invest in an alarm system, since he is often away from home, and I emphasized the importance of leaving lights on when he is away.

I took the fingerprints to the Evidence Room at approximately 10:35 a.m. on April 9.

13 thoughts on “ Type 2 Sample Report ”

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it was Friday April 9Th, 2010 that i, officer Thomas Adams, was dispatched a burglary at 2170 Powell Street at approximately 9:45am. i met with the victim, Frank Gaines, who reported the incident.

Gaines stated that he lives alone, and that he was out of town for a business trip. He said he left April 5, 2010 at approximately 6:15pm, and returned home Friday at approximately 8:45am.

Gaines also stated that he wasn’t thinking to leave any lights on. There was a empty carport while he was on on his trip, because he used his car to commute to the trip.

He is a Pfizer Sales representative. Most people know that he often leaves town for business trips. Soon, after he arrived home, he noticed his window was broken, and glass was over the table.

These are the items that are missing from his home office:

* Dell Alienware computer Serial number #1534920814

* HP Laserjet Printer  Serial number #23179085

*Brother IntelliFax-41003 machine  Serial number #5656778912

i lifted latent fingerprints from Gaines’s desk in the home office. i then seen scattered glass over the kitchen floor. The broken window is about 4 1/2 feet in height, and 6 inches in width. i inspected the rest of the house. i seen no other evidence relating to the burglary. The remaining windows and doors were secure. As i stood in the backyard i noticed that the kitchen window was about 3 feet from the ground.

i took photos of the evidence from the kitchen, and while standing in the backyard; Gaines then said that he and a elderly lady, his neighbor, are friends. He said that she keeps a eye on his house when he is away from home. i had began to question Gaines’s neighbor, Anna Morgan, of 2164 Powell Street. These were her responses:

1) Her dog started barking at about 2 a.m. Wednesday, April 7.

2) She had a headache and did not feel like looking outside.

3) She put the dog into her guest bedroom so that she could get some sleep.

4) Nothing else unusual happened while Gaines was away.

i expressed that Gaines should get a surveillance, since he is away from home frequently.

on April 9Th, at approximately 10:35am, i turned in the fingerprints in to the Evidence Room.

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I stopped reading when I saw the lower-case “i” again.

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yes exactly the word “i”

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As I am a police officer in Sri Lanka I learn how to write a good police report thanks mam

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I’m so pleased you’re finding my materials helpful!

i am preparing for un saat examination it is very comparative one we should have write a police report with in 30 minutes . i want to know bullets system is good or not

You don’t write the whole report in bullets. Use a list if you have a series of facts – for example, you could list the items that were stolen.

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thanks it was helpful to do my homework and the auther please reply me

I’m glad it was helpful!

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Hey…this is very useful but I was wondering if you help me in writing a report for a burglary that took place on a farm.

I’m sorry that I’m not equipped to help write police reports. I suggest you ask an instructor or administrator for assistance.

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I love this, it,s going to be helpful to me, as am going for an interview as a coporate security in a company.

I’m glad you found it helpful! Thanks for the feedback.

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how to write a police report on robbery

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On Language, Communication, and Leadership

How to write organized and concise police reports

Set the scene, by introducing the people, property and other information before it is discussed

The information and methods in this article are more fully discussed in John Bowden’s excellent book “ Report Writing For Law Enforcement & Corrections .” It is available from Amazon and other booksellers. 

Article updated October 19, 2018

What is the secret to good police report writing ? The answer is organization and clarity. By following these two principles, you’re already on the path to a great report. A major problem for a lot of report writers is organization, not writing the report in chronological order. 

One of the biggest challenges with the concept of chronological order is the order according to whom? Is it the writer, the victim, a witness or perhaps even the suspect? Each of these actors in the event has their own perspective to the order of events. Download a copy of this guide to print and keep at your desk. 

Where should I begin the police report?

For the writer, the incident starts when they first arrive on the scene. For the victim, it is when they first realize they are the victim. For the witness, it is when they first see the action that makes them a witness. Of course, for the suspect, it is when they make that conscious decision to commit the crime. True chronological order means the order in which the events actually occurred. 

Many reports begin this way:

While on patrol, (date and time) I received a call to (location). Upon my arrival, I spoke to the victim, (name) who said...

This format is told in the order in which the events occurred to the writer. It can work and has worked since report writing began, in simple cases with few principles, facts and evidence. In these cases, it is easy to use and can be understood fairly well. 

The problems in clarity occur when there are multiple principals, a significant amount of evidence and events occurred over a longer time period of time. 

You know you’re having problems organizing the report when it's unclear where or how to begin the report.

Tell the incident story backward

This format is not what I would call a report. It is a statement from the writer saying what happened to them. In fact, in most cases, the crime has already occurred and the writer is telling the story backward. When asked why they write this way, many report writers will state that they don’t want to make it look like they are making it up — they want to emphasize where they received the information. 

I have a simple startup paragraph that relieves this concern and makes it clear where the information came from:

I, (name), on (date and time) received a call to (location) reference to (the crime). My investigation revealed the following information.

This one short paragraph is interpreted to mean you talked to all the parties involved and examined the evidence. A report is not a statement of what the writer did (although this format can more or less work). A report tells the story of what happened, based on the investigation.

Some writers are concerned about being required to testify about what the report revealed. This is not a concern. You only testify to what you did, heard or saw. 

When a witness tells you what they saw, you cannot testify to those facts, only that they said it to you. Their information should be thoroughly documented in their own written statements. Each witness, victim or suspect will testify to their own part in the case. Crime scene technicians and experts will testify to the evidence and how it relates to the case.

Your story, told in true chronological order, will be the guide to the prosecutor of what happened. It is like the outlines in a coloring book. The prosecutor will add the color with his presentation, using all the subjects and experts as his crayons to illustrate the picture – the story. 

The investigating officer that writes the report is one of those crayons.

Set the scene

We start the process with the opening statement I outlined above. You can change the verbiage to suit your own style. The important phrase is the last sentence, “My investigation revealed the following information.” This tells the reader that this is the story of what happened. Your actions will be inserted in the story as it unfolds.

When you start, set the scene. Introduce the people, property and other information before it is discussed. For example, with a convenience store robbery, set the time, location and victim before you describe the action.

Mr. Jones was working as a store clerk on Jan 12th, 2013, at the Mid-Town Convenience store, 2501 E. Maple Street, at 2315 hours. Jones was standing behind the counter, facing the store. There were no other people in the store.

These first few sentences set the scene. The next sentence is the next thing that happens.

Approximately 2020 hours the suspect walked in the front door.

Each of the following sentences is merely a statement of what happened next.

If you have multiple subjects involved in the event, introduce and place them all at the same time, before starting the action. A good example of this is a shoplifting case with multiple suspects and multiple loss prevention officers. Before starting the action, place all the people. 

This makes it easy to describe the action when it starts.

After you finish telling the story, you can add all the facts that need to be included in the report not brought out in the story. Here are facts that can be included, if available:

Using this process will ensure your police report is clear and complete. 

Want a copy of this guide to keep at your desk? Fill out the form below to download a printable guide.

Guide: Start writing your best police reports

About the author

John Bowden is the founder and director of Applied Police Training and Certification. John retired from the Orlando Police Department as a Master Police Officer In 1994. His career spans a period of 21 years in law enforcement overlapping 25 years of law enforcement instruction. His total of more than 37 years of experience includes all aspects of law enforcement to include: uniform crime scene technician, patrol operations, investigations, undercover operations, planning and research for departmental development, academy coordinator, field training officer and field training supervisor. Contact John Bowden

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How to Write a Police Report

Last Updated: February 24, 2022 Approved

This article was co-authored by Saul Jaeger, MS . Saul Jaeger is a Police Officer and Captain of the Mountain View, California Police Department (MVPD). Saul has over 17 years of experience as a patrol officer, field training officer, traffic officer, detective, hostage negotiator, and as the traffic unit’s sergeant and Public Information Officer for the MVPD. At the MVPD, in addition to commanding the Field Operations Division, Saul has also led the Communications Center (dispatch) and the Crisis Negotiation Team. He earned an MS in Emergency Services Management from the California State University, Long Beach in 2008 and a BS in Administration of Justice from the University of Phoenix in 2006. He also earned a Corporate Innovation LEAD Certificate from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 2018. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 12 testimonials and 83% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,064,935 times.

If you're a police officer or security guard, knowing how to write up a detailed and accurate report is important. A well written incident report gives a thorough account of what happened and sticks to the facts. If you're trying to write a police report, or are curious about how the police put together their reports, learning what to include and how to format the report is helpful.

Following Protocol

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Saul Jaeger, MS

Saul Jaeger, MS

Did You Know? If you call 911, a police report may or may not be generated, depending on the outcome of the call. If a police report isn't generated and you want to file one later, you can call the non-emergency number, and an officer will come out and take the report. However, if you're ever in need of emergency services, call 911.

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Describing What Happened

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Editing Your Report

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Sample Police Report and Things to Include

how to write a police report on robbery

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how to write a police report on robbery

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Obtain a Police Report

About This Article

Saul Jaeger, MS

To write a police report, you should include the time, date, and location of the incident you're reporting, as well as your name and ID number and any other officers that were present. You should also include a thorough description of the incident, like what brought you to the scene and what happened when you arrived. If you're having trouble explaining something in words, draw a picture or diagram to help. Just remember to be as thorough, specific, and objective as possible. To learn what other important details you should include in a police report, keep reading. Did this summary help you? Yes No

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