Center for Problem-Oriented Policing

Goldstein Awards 2011

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Winner! Reducing Cycle Theft: A Partnership Approach between Transport for London and the Metropolitan Police Service

Transport for London, London, UK – 25 Pages

London's transport system is unable to keep up with demands and other transport options such as cycles are necessary. Crime data reveals 23,317 cycles were reported stolen during 2009/10. Analysis identified a number of contributory factors including failure to lock bikes, poor records of ownership, easy resale via websites. In partnership with London's policing agencies formed a Cycle Taskforce (CTF), made up of 30 officers dedicated to tacking the theft problem. A situational crime prevention approach included target hardening bikes against potential theft, increasing risks to offenders and enforcement at theft hotspots. In 2010/11, following months of targeted activity, there were 22,064 reported cycle thefts resulting in a decrease of 5.4% (1253 fewer offences) than the previous year. Efforts to properly mark 13,000 bikes and positive media stories are believed to have contributed to the reduction as well.

Enfield Gangs Action Group

Enfield Safer Stronger Communities Board, Middlesex, UK – 28 Pages

Following several youth murders in 2008 in the district of Enfield, three of which were arguably gang-related, widespread media attention drew inferences with a burgeoning gang culture locally. Over 50% of residents identified weapon and gang crime as a local priority. This was coupled with a 12% increase in serious youth violence. Early enforcement to target gangs had little impact on their longevity whilst there was also difficulty in disaggregating individual offences from those carried out collectively due to an overuse of "gang related". Analysis revealed that criminality levels varied significantly and therefore we began to focus on prominent individuals, locally defined and selected, rather than collectives. Information from multiple agencies was made available through enhanced information sharing procedures. Furthermore, responsibility for the management of offenders was shared across suitable agencies, as oppose to law enforcement alone. Supplementary works such as raising awareness and understanding, delivering prevention programmes and interventions were also coordinated through a multi-agency working group named the 'Gangs Action Group'. The group manages locally defined and identified gang members or affiliates deemed as high-risk. Offences committed by the top 15 nominals decreased by 44% in 2010.

Moped Registration Project

Alexandria Police Department, Alexandria, VA US – 22 Pages

Between 2009 and 2010, the City of Alexandria experienced a dramatic 214% increase in moped larcenies primarily in an area of the city where residents rely heavily on mopeds as their main source of transportation. In 2010, Officers Matthew Kramarik and Nicholas Ruggiero adopted the departments Strategic Response System (SRS) to combat moped thefts. Using data provided by the crime analysis unit to pinpoint specific trends and other factors associated with moped thefts, a comprehensive response to the problem including target hardening and registration was implemented. Significant reductions in moped thefts resulted from these efforts.

Noise in Neighborhoods: Achieving Community Together (ACT)

San Marcos Police Department, San Marcos, TX US – 29 Pages

In town and gown communities, shifting composition of neighborhoods from full-time homeowner residents to part-time student renters can be a recipe for cross-cultural conflict and tension, particularly with noise and disturbances from loud parties late at night. Late night noise adversely affects the quality of life in neighborhoods, reduces property values, and makes neighborhoods less appealing places to live. Because traditional enforcement efforts to curb noisy gatherings resulted in no significant improvements, and because students felt they were being treated unfairly, the police became trapped between conflicting community expectations regarding enforcement policies. Exercising the SARA model of problem solving, police gained a new understanding of neighborhood dynamics, redesigned their response to noise complaints, and decreased enforcement efforts while significantly reducing the number of complaints regarding loud noise in neighborhoods.

Operation Safe Clubs: Enforcement and Situational Problem-Oriented Policing

Miami Police Department, Miami, FL US – 28 Pages

Bar Safe is a program designed to teach Liquor Permit holders how to better manage their environment to reduce incidents of assault and disorder by utilizing CPTED, Situational Crime Prevention, and other Problem Oriented Policing strategies. A task force was created and responses included inter-agency coordination and streamlining of inspection protocols, review of city and state ordinances to clarify regulations, regular meetings with community stakeholders to address concerns, site inspections and enforcement of violations and meetings with nightclub staff regarding security training and other operational issues. Operation Safe Clubs resulted in a decrease in crimes related to nightlife economy, marked decrease in resident sound and disturbance complaints, and increased quality of life for residents and patrons alike.

Safe as Houses - Domestic Burglary Project

London Borough of Enfield, London , UK – 31 Pages

In Enfield during 2008/09 there was an increase of 24% in domestic burglary. The district had the highest volume of all London districts (1 in 20 offences) and had the 8th highest rate of offending nationally. Analysis revealed that a small number of neighborhoods had suffered enduringly high levels of offending for many years – almost 1 in 5 offences occurred in just 4.6% of the districts geographical area. Exploiting a good level of information on geography of offending, and most prevalent targets, a response was designed to control access (in areas of rear entry offending aided by alleyways) and to harden targets (by offering locksmith and home security services). Work was exclusive to long term persistent hotspots. Over 3,000 households were targeted for intervention (2.5% of district housing stock) whilst 88 alleyway gating schemes were implemented. There was a 29% reduction in the intervention area throughout 2010. The change in level of offending within this area contributed to over 40% of the districts overall burglary reduction in 2009/10 and over 70% in 2010/11. A total of £231k was allocated to the scheme whilst money saved from reduced burglary within the intervention area currently equates to £934k.

The Urban High School Disorder Reduction Project

Dayton Police Department, Dayton, OH US – 26 Pages

Belmont High School is located in an urban area in the City of Dayton. The school is 85% economically disadvantaged, 20% limited English proficient (12 languages) and 28.1% students with disabilities. For the past 10 years, it was the number one violent crime location in the city and diminished Dayton PD's capacity to answer calls for service in other areas of the district. Negative network and print media coverage highlighted problems. As a result, the Dayton Police Department created a partnership with Dayton Public Schools and the Montgomery County Juvenile Court to focus on high-rate offenders. Police worked in collaboration with Belmont High School staff and as a result of their efforts reduced crimes significantly at the school and surrounding neighborhoods. Neither extra staffing nor overtime was utilized by the Dayton Police Department for this project.