Strategic Crime Analysis

Strategic crime analysis furnishes information concerning long-range problems. Strategic crime analysts provide data relative to long-term increases or decreases in crime (crime trend data). They also prepare crime statistical summaries—often referred to as exception reports since they reflect deviations from the norm—and provide resource acquisition and allocation information.

Strategic crime analysis involves the study of crime and law enforcement information integrated with sociodemographic and spatial factors to determine long-term “patterns” of activity, to assist in problem-solving, and to research and evaluate responses and procedures.

In general, strategie crime analysis consists primarily of quantitative analysis of aggregate data. That usually means monthly, quarterly, or yearly compilations of information, such as crime, calls for service, and traffic information analyzed in aggregate (as a collection or a whole) form. That is, general categories such as date, time, location, and type of incident are analyzed instead of qualitative data, such as narrative descriptions of incidents. Variables including race, class, sex, income, population, location, and location type are examined, along with law enforcement information in the analysis process.

Goals of Strategic Crime Analysis

The two primary goals of strategic crime analysis are (1) to assist in the identification and analysis of long-term problems, such as drug activity or auto theft; and (2) to conduct studies to investigate or evaluate relevant responses and procedures.

Concerned with operational strategies that seek solutions to ongoing problems, strategic crime analysis can provide information for resource allocation purposes, including optimized patrol scheduling and configuration of patrol zones. Its purpose is to identify crime activities and patterns, identify community conditions, provide police service more effectively and efficiently by matching demands for service with actual delivery, reduce or eliminate recurring problems, and assist in community policing or problem-oriented policing.

Examples of strategic crime analysis include crime pattern analysis (examination of the nature and distribution of crime within an area), crime control methods analysis (investigation of crime control methods and techniques to determine their usefulness), and general profile analysis (identification of the typical characteristics of perpetrators of certain types of crime).

Administrative Crime Analysis

Administrative crime analysis concerns itself with the presentation of interesting findings of crime research and analysis based on legal, political, and practical concerns to inform audiences from within law enforcement administration, and city government, as well as citizens.

Administrative crime analysis is different from the previous types of analysis that we have discussed in that it refers to the presentation of findings rather than to statistical analysis or research. The decision on what information to present and how is the primary focus of administrative crime analysis. The purpose of and the audience for the information determine what is presented, but the primary purpose of administrative crime analysis is to inform audiences.These audiences may vary from one situation to the next, which is why the type and quantity of information will vary as well. Audiences can be police executives, city council members, media, citizens, and neighborhood groups, or all of these.

Examples of Administrative Crime Analysis

Examples of administrative crime analysis tasks include grant writing, feasibility studies, and the preparation of special research projects. In general, administrative crime analysis is not focused on the immediate or long-term reduction or elimination of a criminal pattern or trend. An example of administrative crime analysis is to post information on the police departments website to inform citizens and the community about an issue. Besides citizens, the audience of a police department’s website may well include police personnel, businesses, victims, criminals, and the media. Thus, the type of information presented on the website can include crime trends, police department policy changes, and other updates useful to the community.

Sometimes, the analyst will conduct a study of a police departments operations, procedures, and policies.This kind of analysis is aimed at helping the department to run more effectively and efficiently. Administrative analysis often includes the presentation of findings to the police administration and to government officials. But the police administration and public officials may ask for statistics or data to be sure they are leading the department or the city in the right direction. Much like investigative analysis, administrative analysis tasks can range from small scale, like determining if burglaries declined during a prevention initiative, to large scale, like conducting a workload analysis to determine if staffing is adequate and if departmental resources are being efficiently deployed.

Other examples of administrative crime analysis could include tracking nuisance calls for service to the police department, generating press releases and other public information materials concerning crime patterns and crime prevention, and researching new technologies and services available to police.

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