Each week, the Missourian highlights a government record that is available to the public. Open records help people keep government in check and help them better understand how government affects their lives.
For a complete list of Show Me the Records, go to columbiamissourian.com/records.
The records: The FBI's detailed records of the number of police officers, civilian employees and the total number of law enforcement employees in Missouri cities is compared to the populations of those cities.
Why you would want them: After a little number crunching, there are discrepancies in the ratio of police officers to citizens in a given city. In St. Louis, which has one of the highest crime rates in the country, the ratio is 260.57 citizens for every one police officer. In Kansas City, that ratio is 344.15 to one. In Columbia, where the crime rate has been relatively stable for the past decade, there is one police officer for every 654.54 civilians. To calculate the ratio of police officers to civilians in your city, divide the total population by the number of police officers.
Where you get them: Go to fbi.gov and click on the "Stats and Services" icon. Click on "Crime Statistics" under "Most Requested Services." Under "Uniformed Crime Reports," click on "2010." Under the "Police Employee Data" icon, click on "Go to Police Employee Tables." Under the "Browse By" section, scroll to "City Agency" click on the link "Table 78." Then click on the "Missouri" icon.
How much will it cost: The information is free.