Technology: The Role Of Technology In Law Enforcement

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When I started in law enforcement the only technology we had were the police radios, which had two or three channels, typewriters and a few of the lucky officers bought their own expensive word processors. Today the radios have banks of 50 channels or more, there are in-car computers, automated finger printers, body cameras, personal cell phones that are as robust as computers, eTickets that printout in an officers car to surveillance cameras that can turn complete darkness visible. In the last 20 years there have been more advances in law enforcement technology than in the prior 187 years, when Sir Robert Peel created the first modern police force, the Metropolitan Police in England, circa 1829.

Throughout my career I have been put into
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By reducing the amount of time any officer spends doing a task or sitting at the station, unseen it frees him or her up to be patrolling the streets or visible in the community. In fact, contained in some of the broadest assessment of the impact of technology in policing by the Federal Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) has shown there are mixed results as to whether technology has helped reduce crime. Similarly, in a national study of large police agencies over the period of 1987-2003, Garicano and Heaton (2010) found that increases in the applications of IT and technology were not associated with reductions in crime rates, increases in clearance rates or other productivity measures. However, these same authors found evidence that technology and IT was linked to improved productivity when complemented with good organizational and managerial practices that reflect more strategic uses. To that end, technology that we have available to us at a municipal level may or may not show real reductions in the crime or clearance rates, it can show reductions in wasted man hours at the station doing, increased productivity by reducing the time an officer spends on a car stop and having all the information available to him on the street thats available to him at the …show more content…
Included in that vision is a long term technology plan that integrates with each component of our existing system and will have a positive effect with multiple strategies. I have already started to implement some of that plan and the police department has already seen dividends. In mid-June I implemented a technology that I had been looking into. CarFax for police is a FREE service from CarFax that allows us to sell our accident reports online for $5 each with 100% of the income going to Berlin. Furthermore, included with the system is the ability to run partial tags in the CarFax system, which we are otherwise unable to do. This new ability has already enabled me to solve a crime that otherwise may not have been solved, since we only had a partial license plate to go on. The front office has also seen a decline in foot traffic at the window for those requesting the accident reports, including those involved and their insurance companies. Which has enabled staff to devote time to other matters. Since the implementation, this free service has generated over $120 income and as the project fully rolls out, that number should rise each

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