Priority Issues: Law Enforcement

I. The Issue

Recent technological advances, particularly in rapid computation and data analysis, have revolutionized virtually every aspect of American life. The business world has been similarly enriched by important innovations in management theory. All these developments can and should be widely applied to the world of law enforcement.

II. The Impact

CompSTAT, which stands for Computer Statistics or Comparative Statistics, was launched in New York City and is perhaps the best-known technological innovation in law enforcement. CompSTAT has two components. The first is software-intensive, and it uses real-time crime data to quickly allocate police resources to crime “hot spots” in cities. The second element, which concerns managerial techniques, decentralizes authority to precinct commanders and holds them accountable for changes in the crime rate within their jurisdiction. City police leaders meet with commanders on a frequent basis to discuss data findings and to plan patrol activity. These methods increase the number of criminals apprehended, but perhaps more importantly, studies suggest that the strong and visible police presence has a deterrence effect. Former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani partly credits CompSTAT with the 62 percent drop in the crime rate in New York from 1993 to 2001.

Another well-known – but not widely enough adopted – technology is Chicago’s Citizen Law Enforcement Analysis and Reporting (CLEAR). The CLEAR database contains millions of incident reports and other information that officers can query using wireless, touchscreen notebooks in their cars. The data allows officers to instantly check suspects against the database of fugitives, parolees, and offenders who are wanted on warrants. A mug shot, for example, can be accessed in just seconds – rather than four days. Most significantly, CLEAR empowers community policing. Citizens use a website to find out who is policing their neighborhood so that they can efficiently relay leads about criminal activity. Chicago’s murder rate dropped from 22.1 per 100,000 in 2002 to 15.5 in 2004 following the implementation of CLEAR. The number of robberies has also declined nearly 30 percent from 2000 to 2007. Because fewer Chicagoans have been incarcerated since 1999, it is not incarceration that is yielding results. More likely, it is Chicago’s innovations in law enforcement, including CLEAR.

III. The Conservative Solution

• Increase the utilization of data-driven policing and related performance measures such as CompSTAT and CLEAR.
• Involve private security in data-driven policing to expand the knowledge base and expedite responses.
• Expand the use of GPS monitoring of parolees and probationers.

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    Vikrant Reddy sits down with NRA News to set the record straight on ROC’s policies concerning marijuana legalization.

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    ROC policy analyst Vikrant Reddy is featured in this BuzzFeed article as he discusses the bipartisan movement to reform the nation’s criminal justice system.

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    Posted in Adult Probation, Audio and Video, Law Enforcement, Parole and Re-Entry, Prisons, ROC Blog, State Initiatives, Texas: February 17, 2014 by Right on Crime

    Adam Gelb, Director of Public Safety Performance Project at Pew Charitable Trusts, The Honorable Bill Hammond, President and CEO of Texas Association of Business, and Representatives Abel Hererro and Tan Parker of the Texas House of Representatives discuss adult corrections in the Lone Star State.

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  • Nebraska’s “fresh look on reform”

    Posted in Audio and Video, Law Enforcement, Nebraska, Prisons, ROC Blog, State Initiatives: February 10, 2014 by Right on Crime

    In this segment of Nebraska’s KNOP-TV, ROC policy director Marc Levin proposes three solutions for improving the state’s criminal justice system.

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    Posted in Alaska, Law Enforcement, Prisons, ROC Blog, State Initiatives: February 6, 2014 by Right on Crime

    This new ROC infographic illustrates the high cost and low return of Alaska’s corrections system.

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    Posted in California, Law Enforcement, Parole and Re-Entry, Prisons, ROC Blog, State Initiatives, Texas: January 31, 2014 by Right on Crime

    In lieu of Chuck DeVore’s testimony in California on the topic of realignment, Democratic Senator Mark Leno and committee chairman, acknowledged that his state’s  criminal justice system needs improvement. “We’re going in the wrong direction,” said Sen. Leno. “Not only is the population not going down, it’s going up. Not only are we not saving [...]

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    Posted in Adult Probation, Audio, California, Law Enforcement, Parole and Re-Entry, Prisons, ROC Blog, State Initiatives, Texas: January 31, 2014 by Right on Crime

    Following his testimony before California’s Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review, Chuck DeVore sat down with KOGO’s LaDona Harvey out of San Digeo to reiterate the prison reform successes of Texas and tell why he believes The Golden State would benefit from following in the footsteps of Right On Crime. Click here to listen to [...]

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