Archive for the ‘law enforcement personnel’ Category

Identifying Barriers to Diversity in Law Enforcement Agencies

September 2, 2012 Comments off

Identifying Barriers to Diversity in Law Enforcement Agencies

Source:  RAND Corporation
The authors describe how law enforcement agencies can use barrier analysis, a method of assessment aimed at identifying potential obstacles to obtaining resources or participating in a program, to better understand and address the challenge of creating diversity among their personnel. They examine key points in the career lifecycle, such as recruitment, hiring, promotion, and retention practices, to determine where women and racial/ethnic minorities face obstacles that might account for less-than-proportionate representation among applicants, hires, and senior leadership. They describe the barrier analysis process, illustrate how it can help law enforcement agencies increase the diversity of their workforce, and present case studies featuring police departments that have used barrier analysis.

AU — First-response police officers working in single person patrols: A literature review

August 21, 2012 Comments off

First-response police officers working in single person patrols: A literature review

Source:  Australian Institute of Criminology
The AIC undertook a literature review on single person police patrols both in Australia and internationally. This report examines challenges faced by first-response police officers when working alone and the impact this had on them, operational decisions to deploy single person patrols and how the community view this issue. It concludes that there has been limited research on single person patrols in policing and of the research findings available in the literature, results are mixed and updated research needs to be undertaken.

A Due Process Right to Record the Police

May 23, 2012 Comments off

A Due Process Right to Record the Police
Source: Social Science Research Network

There has been considerable discussion of citizens’ First Amendment right to record the police. This essay, however, argues that independent of any First Amendment right, there is also a due process right to record the actions of law enforcement, and that this right applies even when the interaction takes place in private, and not in public places. This question of a due process right to record the police has not yet produced the degree of attention and litigation that public recording has, but the growth of inexpensive recording equipment and its inclusion in smart phones ensures that such attention and litigation are sure to be forthcoming.

PERF Report Offers Police Leaders’ Perspectives on Immigration Enforcement

May 7, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Police Executive Research Forum
PERF has released a new report that explores the issue of illegal immigration from the perspective of local police and sheriffs’ departments across the country.
The report, Voices from Across the Country: Local Law Enforcement Officials Discuss the Challenges of Immigration Enforcement, is based on regional meetings of police executives and other officials held in Raleigh, NC; Colorado Springs; and Laredo, TX.   In addition, PERF convened a meeting at the Prince William County, VA Police Department to hear officials from that department describe their experience in implementing a new immigration policy.
Full Report (PDF)

Critical Issues in Policing Series: Improving the Police Response to Sexual Assault

May 6, 2012 Comments off
On September 23, 2011, PERF held a conference in Washington, D.C. titled “Improving the Police Response to Sexual Assaults.”  This conference brought together approximately 150 police executives, leaders of women’s and crime victim organizations, FBI leaders and other federal officials, and others to discuss the handling of sexual assault crimes.
One of the key issues discussed at the conference was the inadequacies of the definition of rape used by the FBI in its Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program. The definition, unchanged since 1927, did not capture many types of sex offenses.
PERF is pleased to note that on January 6, 2012, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he has approved a new UCR definition that will lead to a more comprehensive statistical reporting of rape nationwide.

New From the GAO

February 15, 2012 Comments off

New GAO Reports and TestimonySource: Government Accountability Office

+ Reports

1. Early Child Care and Education: HHS and Education Are Taking Steps to Improve Workforce Data and Enhance Worker Quality. GAO-12-248, February 15.
Highlights –

2. U.S. Coins: Alternative Scenarios Suggest Different Benefits and Losses from Replacing the $1 Note with a $1 Coin. GAO-12-307, February 15.
Highlights –
Podcast –

3. Law Enforcement Body Armor: DOJ Could Enhance Grant Management Controls and Better Ensure Consistency in Grant Program Requirements. GAO-12-353, February 15.
Highlights –

+ Testimony

1. Law Enforcement Body Armor: DOJ Supports Its Use and Enhancements, but Could Strengthen Management of Its Related Grant Programs, by Dave C. Maurer, Director, Homeland Security and Justice, before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. GAO-12-448T, February 15.

Allegations of Misconduct and Illegal Discrimination and Retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service

February 8, 2012 Comments off

Allegations of Misconduct and Illegal Discrimination and Retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service (PDF)Source: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General

In January 2010, CNN reported allegations of misconduct and illegal employment discrimination and retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service’s Orlando field office. The reports included descriptions of an agency rife with cronyism; age, gender, and racial discrimination; and unfair treatment in promotions, assignments, and discipline. Also included were photographs of a game board modeled after the television show “Jeopardy!” created and displayed by supervisors there, with categories containing derogatory nicknames referring to veterans, females, African Americans, Hispanics, and lesbians and gays. Senator Bill Nelson and Congressmen Edolphus Towns and Darrell Issa asked us to review the allegations in Orlando and throughout the agency as well as the circumstances surrounding the game board.

Although individual employees may have experienced discrimination or retaliation, our review does not support a finding of widespread discrimination and retaliation within the Federal Air Marshal Service. However, employees’ perceptions of discrimination and retaliation are extensive, and we heard too many negative and conflicting accounts of events to dismiss them. Many Federal Air Marshals and some supervisors think they have been discriminated against, fear retaliation, and believe there is much favoritism. There is a great deal of tension, mistrust, and dislike between non-supervisory and supervisory personnel in field offices around the country. We identified factors that contributed to strained relations and became the basis for the allegations. Limited transparency in management decisions is also at the center of fears of retaliation and perceptions that management is mistreating its workforce.

These issues pose a difficult challenge for the agency, but they do not appear to have compromised the service’s mission. Transportation Security Administration and Federal Air Marshal Service senior leadership are committed to addressing these issues and have implemented several proactive initiatives to address them. We are making several recommendations to help the agency mitigate these issues.

See also: Spotlight: Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General (PDF)

Volunteers in Police Service Add Value While Budgets Decrease

January 16, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Bureau of Justice Assistance
While in the midst of budget cuts, many law enforcement agencies are being asked to take on additional responsibilities due to cuts and restructuring in other government agencies. Seventy-seven percent of agencies were asked to increase their support of other agencies and asked to shoulder additional responsibilities in the last year.
More than ever, volunteerism in the law enforcement arena has become a need and not a luxury. The financial return on investment of a volunteer program can be substantial, amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of value added to the agency each year. In 2009, IACP’s Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) Program held a focus group to see how agencies were coping with tightening budgets by utilizing their existing volunteer programs. While agencies were cutting staff and programs, the use of volunteers remained consistent or, in some cases, increased. Many agencies have responded to the tough financial climate by training and placing volunteers in duties not previously performed by volunteers.
The services provided by VIPS volunteers are essential. As we look to the future, it is clear that the economic outlook is not going to change anytime soon. Shrinking budgets and limited resources will remain the norm for some time. In the IACP Policing in the 21st Century survey, one-third of law enforcement leaders said they will have to further reduce their budgets by 10 percent or more in the coming year.  In these difficult times, volunteers can enhance public safety and services and offer a wealth of skills and resources to law enforcement and their communities.

New From the GAO

December 22, 2011 Comments off

New GAO Report
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Border Security: Additional Steps Needed to Ensure That Officers Are Fully Trained. GAO-12-269, December 22.
Highlights –

Justice Department Releases Investigative Findings on the Seattle Police Department

December 21, 2011 Comments off
Source:  U.S. Department of Justice

Following a comprehensive investigation, the Justice Department today announced its findings that the Seattle Police Department (SPD) has engaged in a pattern or practice of excessive force that violates the Constitution and federal law.  A letter detailing the findings was delivered to Seattle Mayor Michael McGinn and Police Chief John Diaz.

The investigation, launched on March 31, 2011, and conducted by the Civil Rights Division’s Special Litigation Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Washington, focused on whether SPD engages in unconstitutional or unlawful policing through either (1) the use of excessive force or (2) discriminatory policing.  The Justice Department found reasonable cause to believe that SPD engages in a pattern or practice of excessive force, in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.  The Justice Department does not make a finding that SPD engages in a pattern or practice of discriminatory policing, but the investigation raised serious concerns that some of SPD’s policies and practices, particularly those related to pedestrian encounters, could result in unlawful discriminatory policing.  These practices undermine SPD’s ability to build trust among segments of Seattle’s diverse communities.

Ukraine must act to deal with endemic police criminality

December 17, 2011 Comments off

Ukraine must act to deal with endemic police criminality
Source: Amnesty International

The Ukrainian authorities must act immediately to deal with endemic police criminality, Amnesty International said today in a new report that reveals widespread torture, extortion, and arbitrary detention.

No evidence of a crime: Paying the price for police impunity in Ukraine, reveals how police are rarely punished for these crimes because of high levels of corruption, non-existent or flawed investigations, harassment and intimidation of complainants, and a low level of prosecutions for such crimes.

+ Full Report (PDF)

Department of Justice Releases Investigative Findings on the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office

December 16, 2011 Comments off

Department of Justice Releases Investigative Findings on the Maricopa County Sheriff’s OfficeSource: U.S. Department of Justice

Following a comprehensive investigation, the Justice Department today announced its findings in the ongoing civil rights investigation of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO). The Justice Department found reasonable cause to believe that MCSO, under the leadership of Sheriff Joseph M. Arpaio, has engaged in a pattern or practice of misconduct that violates the Constitution and federal law. The investigation, opened in June 2008, was conducted under the provisions of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Title VI implementing regulations.

The department found reasonable cause to believe that a pattern or practice of unconstitutional conduct and/or violations of federal law occurred in several areas, including:

  • Discriminatory policing practices including unlawful stops, detentions and arrests of Latinos;
  • Unlawful retaliation against individuals exercising their First Amendment right to criticize MCSO’s policies or practices, including but not limited to practices relating to its discriminatory treatment of Latinos; and
  • Discriminatory jail practices against Latino inmates with limited English proficiency by punishing them and denying them critical services.

The Justice Department found a number of long-standing and entrenched systemic deficiencies that caused or contributed to these patterns of unlawful conduct, including:

  • A failure to implement policies guiding deputies on lawful policing practices;
  • Allowing specialized units to engage in unconstitutional practices;
  • Inadequate training;
  • Inadequate supervision;
  • An ineffective disciplinary, oversight and accountability system; and
  • A lack of sufficient external oversight and accountability.

In addition to these formal pattern or practice findings, the investigation uncovered additional areas of serious concern, including:

  • Use of excessive force;
  • Police practices that have the effect of significantly compromising MCSO’s ability to adequately protect Latino residents; and
  • Failure to adequately investigate allegations of sexual assaults.

+ Full Report

Impact of the Economic Downturn on American Police Agencies

December 13, 2011 Comments off

Impact of the Economic Downturn on American Police Agencies (PDF)
Source:  U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community-Oriented Policing Services

In 2008, the entire country was introduced to the largest fiscal crisis since the Great Depression . Many who have worked in the field for decades have never seen an economic situation that has affected law enforcement like the one our country currently faces . As cities and counties across America are experiencing a downturn in local revenues, the effects on public safety budgets have been significant. Americans are faced with a new economic reality, in which they are challenged to develop new and innovative ways to leverage resources and maximize productivity in the face of diminishing financial means. Police agencies have not escaped the effects of shrinking revenues . In fact, the economic challenges facing many Americans are amplified when it comes to public safety.

To compensate for shrinking budgets, many individuals focus on what can be sacrificed from their normal lifestyle in order to offset the reduction in available spending . Families may forego their annual summer vacation, or choose to only shop in discount stores rather than their favorite department stores . However, law enforcement agencies face the more difficult and ever important task of maintaining the same quality of service that they always have provided despite a severe reduction in available resources . Therefore, to successfully deliver the high levels of community protection and emergency responsiveness communities depend on, law enforcement agencies must develop new and innovative techniques to address the needs of their communities in cost-effective and sustainable ways.

New From the GAO

November 22, 2011 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1.  For-Profit Schools: Experiences of Undercover Students Enrolled in Online Classes at Selected Colleges.  GAO-12-150, October 31.
Highlights -

2.  Arizona Border Region: Federal Agencies Could Better Utilize Law Enforcement Resources in Support of Wildland Fire Management Activities.  GAO-12-73, November 8.
Highlights -

3.   Immigration Benefits: Consistent Adherence to DHS’s Acquisition Policy Could Help Improve Transformation Program Outcomes.  GAO-12-66, November 22.
Highlights -

4.  User Fees:  Additional Guidance and Documentation Could Further Strengthen IRS’s Biennial Review of Fees.  GAO-12-193, November 22.
Highlights -

Law Enforcement Guidelines for First Amendment-Protected Events

November 15, 2011 Comments off

Law Enforcement Guidelines for First Amendment-Protected Events (PDF)
Source: U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Homeland Security

As articulated in the United States Constitution, one of the freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment is the right of persons and groups to assemble peacefully. Whether demonstrating, counterprotesting, or showing support for a cause, individuals and groups have the right to peacefully gather. Law enforcement, in turn, has the responsibility to ensure public safety while protecting the privacy and associated rights of individuals.

To support agencies as they fulfill their public safety responsibilities, the Criminal Intelligence Coordinating Council (CICC) developed this paper to provide guidance and recommendations to law enforcement officers in understanding their role in First Amendment-protected events.

This paper is divided into three areas, designed to provide in-depth guidance for law enforcement.

  1. Pre-Event Stage—Discusses how law enforcement will plan for an event or demonstration where First Amendment protections are involved, focusing on the activity that begins when law enforcement leadership learns of an event and must determine the level, if any, of involvement at the event, from both public safety and investigative standpoints.
  2. Operational Stage—Focuses on how law enforcement will respond to the event, based on the findings from the Pre-Event Stage, including the development and execution of the Operations Plan.
  3. Post-Event Stage—Addresses how and whether information obtained as a result of the event (both during the Pre-Event Stage and Operational Stage) will be evaluated, disseminated, retained, or discarded, as per agency policy.

As agencies respond to First Amendment-protected events, law enforcement leadership should be aware of certain “red flag” issues that may arise as they assess whether the agency and personnel should be involved in these events and, if so, what form that involvement should take. As agencies review and understand the concepts and recommendations within this paper, special consideration should be given to these “red flag” issues to ensure that law enforcement agencies and personnel do not infringe on the rights of persons and groups.

Hat tip: PW

SIGIR — October 2011: Quarterly Report To Congress

November 8, 2011 Comments off

October 2011: Quarterly Report To Congress
Source: Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction

Sixty days from now, the mission of the U.S. Forces-Iraq will come to an end. his historic moment will close the books on nearly nine years of U.S. military engagement in Iraq. his moment also inaugurates a new phase in the strategic partnership between the United States and Iraq. Substantial U.S. inancial assistance will continue, albeit at levels lower than in previous years. But a more cooperative and collaborative aspect will eventually embrace this crucially important relationship as the State Department’s plans and programs develop.

The Iraq that the U.S. military leaves is fundamentally changed from the foundering state that existed in the spring of 2003. Iraq’s economy, then at a stand-still, is expected to grow at a robust 9.6% this year; inlation is low; the national budget is 40% larger than it was three years ago; and oil production in 2011 will almost certainly set a post-2003 record. But Iraq still sufers from daily attacks, with Iraqi Security Forces personnel and senior Government of Iraq leaders regularly subject to assassination attempts. his painful reality underscores the continuing need for Iraq to strengthen its military, police, and rule-of-law institutions. Section 1 of this Report features detailed perspectives on the security situation drawn from recent interviews with top oicials at the Ministries of Interior and Defense.

There were political clashes within the GOI this quarter over competing versions of the long-awaited new hydrocarbon law, a contentious issue that fundamentally divides the GOI and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). his Report’s Focus on the Kurdistan Region provides details on what has been a largely successful reconstruction program in that part of northern Iraq, notwithstanding the unsettling issues that currently daunt relations between the GOI and KRG.

Contacts Between Police And The Public, 2008

October 6, 2011 Comments off

Contacts Between Police And The Public, 2008
Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics

Presents findings from a nationally representative survey of nearly 60,000 residents age 16 or older about their contact with police during the 12 months prior to the interview. Interviews were conducted between July 1, 2008 and December 31, 2008 as a supplement to the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). This report offers detailed information on face-to-face contacts with the police, including the reason for and outcome of the contact, resident opinion on police behavior during the contact, and whether police used or threatened use of force during the contact. The report describes the demographic characteristics of residents involved in traffic stops and incidents in which the police used force. It also provides comparative analysis with prior survey findings.

Highlights include the following:

  • The percent of U.S. residents age 16 or older who had face-to-face contact with police declined from 2002 (21.0%) to 2005 (19.1%) and declined again in 2008 (16.9%).
  • White (8.4%), black (8.8%), and Hispanic (9.1%) drivers were stopped by police at similar rates in 2008.
  • Male drivers (9.9%) were stopped at higher rates than female drivers (7.0%).

+ Full Report (PDF)

Surveillance Cameras Cost-Effective Tools for Cutting Crime, 3-Year Study Concludes

September 22, 2011 Comments off

Surveillance Cameras Cost-Effective Tools for Cutting Crime, 3-Year Study Concludes
Source: Urban Institute

Between 2007 and 2010, researchers from the Urban Institute’s Justice Policy Center studied public surveillance systems in Baltimore, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., to measure the extent of their use, their effects on crime, their other benefits, and their costs. While results varied by area, surveillance systems in Baltimore and Chicago produced more than enough benefits to justify their costs. No cost-benefit analysis was conducted in Washington, D.C., because the cameras didn’t show a statistically significant impact on crime there.

+ Full Document (PDF)
+ Using Public Surveillance Systems for Crime Control and Prevention: A Practical Guide for Law Enforcement and Their Municipal Partners

Study of Deaths Following Electro Muscular Disruption

September 14, 2011 Comments off

Study of Deaths Following Electro Muscular Disruption (PDF)
Source: National Institute of Justice

This final report provides findings concerning death investigation, CED use, CED-related health effects, and medical response. The panel recommends a thorough review of the entire report and the associated research literature for medicolegal personnel and those making decisions concerning CED deployment and associated policies. The following findings are provided as those of most general interest to date.

There is no conclusive medical evidence in the current body of research literature that indicates a high risk of serious injury or death to humans from the direct or indirect cardiovascular or metabolic effects of short-term CED exposure in healthy, normal, nonstressed, nonintoxicated persons. Field experience with CED use indicates that shortterm exposure is safe in the vast majority of cases. The risk of death in a CED-related use­of-force incident is less than 0.25 percent, and it is reasonable to conclude that CEDs do not cause or contribute to death in the large majority of those cases.

Law enforcement need not refrain from using CEDs to place uncooperative or combative subjects in custody, provided the devices are used in accordance with accepted national guidelines and appropriate use-of-force policy. The current literature as a whole suggests that deployment of a CED has a margin of safety as great as or greater than most alternatives. Because the physiologic effects of prolonged or repeated CED exposure are not fully understood, law enforcement officers should refrain, when possible, from continuous activations of greater than 15 seconds, as few studies have reported on longer time frames. All deaths following deployment of a CED should be subject to a complete medicolegal investigation, including a complete autopsy by a forensic pathologist in conjunction with a medically objective investigation that is independent of law enforcement. The complete investigation should include the collection of information specific to CED-related deaths, such as the manner in which and the location where CED darts or prongs were applied. A recommended checklist is contained in chapter 11, “Considerations in Death Investigation,” pages 36-37 in this report.

Mitigating Corruption in Government Security Forces: The Role of Institutions, Incentives, and Personnel Management in Mexico

September 4, 2011 Comments off

Mitigating Corruption in Government Security Forces: The Role of Institutions, Incentives, and Personnel Management in Mexico
Source: RAND Corporation

Mexico has undertaken reforms in recent years to professionalize its police. This report draws on the literature on corruption and personnel incentives and analyzes information related to police reform in Mexico. It addresses questions about the roots of corruption and the tools that could be used to mitigate corruption, with a focus on compensation and personnel management policies. It also provides an initial assessment about the effects of Mexico’s attempts at reform. The results suggest progress on some fronts. Although police corruption has remained generally stable at a high level, compared with corruption levels in other organizations, it appears to have fallen. The types of reforms being introduced are consistent with the literature on incentive mechanisms for effective workforce management, though evidence is absent on their effectiveness. The authors argue that continuity in elected officials and their policies, coordination within and between levels of government, and transparency and accountability can contribute to reducing police corruption.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 634 other followers