Innovations in Field Operations

Chapter Eight focuses on innovations in police field operations. These may be divided into community-, place-, and person-based approaches.

Community-based approaches entail using community resources to help identify crimes and problems. Various individuals and non-law enforcement agencies in the city work with the police. Approaches include community-oriented policing, procedural justice, and broken-windows policing.

The place-based approach looks at places where crime takes place and focuses strategies and personnel on those areas. Numerous strategies fall under this headings, such as focused interventions, hot spot policing, attempts to lower gun violence, intelligence-led policing, and predictive policing.

Person-based approaches consist primarily of focused deterrence initiatives. Department select certain crime problems and compose interagency enforcement groups to deal with the problem. This group conducts research on the problem in order to devise an approach to dealing with key offenders. The group involves community members to spread the message of nonviolence and let offenders know that they are being watched.

While we do not know exactly what works in policing, we do know that each of the strategies identified has its peculiar strengths and weaknesses. It is probably best that each community choose among the various strategies to find those that are most effective in dealing with crime.