After reading Chapter 6 answer the following questions:
Define Target Selection and what is its purpose?
Define and Discuss the significance of the following terms:
- Recording crime details
- Threat assessments
- Objective targeting and offender self-selection
- Playing well with others
Many analysts receive little direction and are responsible for targeting decisions.
a. Recording crime details
• Most targeting decisions are based on recorded crime details.
• Many variables are recorded, but few analysts have time to analyze them. For example, modus operandi is a variable that is little understood for targeting.
• Distance between crime events is believed to be a reliable indicator for crime linkages.
• ViCAP is a initiative that tries to better utilize modus operandi variables, but suffers from under‐reporting.
b. Threat assessments
• Published threat assessments, often from agencies with national or regional responsibility, is a way to influence the target selection of local agencies.
• Harm, and social harm based models are starting to feature in threat assessments. Met Police have four types: social, economic, political, indirect.
• Risk assessment may be a more accurate name for these documents.
OBJECTIVE TARGETING AND OFFENDER SELF‐SELECTION
• The snowball approach to targeting criminal gangs works to increase the intelligence available to police departments, but it runs the risk of focusing police attention on the ‘usual suspects’.
• This creates a positive feedback loop. For example, RCMP Sleipnir program drew attention to the need for information on outlaw motorcycle gangs, and this request alone made police departments focus more on OMCGs.
• Offender self‐selection may be a more ethical approach. Existing criminal triggers are used to identify more serious offenders. Offenders bring police attention on themselves.
a. Playing well with others
• Information sharing is a US priority after 9/11 but the organization of police departments militates against it.
• Small agencies rarely have the resources to address wider concerns.
• Bureaucratic hurdles often limit info sharing, so informal networks spring up to solve the problem.
• Solutions include team‐based task forces, wider dissemination of intelligence products, and liaison officers attached to neighboring agencies.
• The intelligence cycle is often adhered to in a more informal state, and an understanding of the desired style of final product can help with collation.
• Intelligence requirements provide a structured mechanism, useful when agencies collaborate
• Strategic and Tactical Intelligence Requirements (SIRs and TIRs)
• But… over‐reliance on law enforcement data can create products with significant limitations.
a. Improving information sharing
• Kelling and Bratton note, ‘The problem for American policing is not so much getting the intelligence but making sense of it and sharing it with those who can use it’ (2006: 5).
b. A role for liaison officers?
• Liaison officers are becoming de rigor in many fusion centers and agencies that have to reach out across jurisdictional boundaries.
• However, few guidelines for the position of liaison officer exist.
c. Confidential informants
• Within intelligence‐led policing, informants have become a central mechanism to better understand the criminal environment.
• Their use is limited, in that few offenders have a view of the bigger picture of criminality outside their own immediate area.
• A key part of intelligence‐led policing is that informants should be used in a more strategic manner.
• Note that results analysis is simply evaluation, a key component of POP.
a. Strategic thinking
• Strategic analysis often involves a range of skills that are quite different from tactical analysis. This is often a challenging area for police analysts, and one that is not high on training agendas.