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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 182956 Find in a Library
Title: Measuring Success
Journal: Police Chief  Volume:67  Issue:3  Dated:March 2000  Pages:28-36
Author(s): Ross E. Swope
Editor(s): Charles E. Higginbotham
Date Published: 2000
Page Count: 5
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Working smarter is becoming a necessity for many police departments that face increasing demands without receiving additional resources to meet those demands; in the process of working smarter, many police departments are using new policing models such as community-oriented and problem-solving policing.
Abstract: New policing models call for decentralized organizational structures and place the brunt of the responsibility for implementing change on street-level police officers. Because of this, program evaluation is critical. Program evaluation can provide police departments with measures of success and show what plans, tactics, and initiatives should be continued or abandoned. In addition, resources can be more efficiently directed as a result of program evaluation. The specific purpose of program evaluation should be to determine of an intervention, response, tactic, or action was implemented as planned. Program evaluation is the process of determining whether actions taken produced the intended results. To develop a plan to address a specific problem, clear goals should be established. Traditional goals of police departments include reducing crime rates, increasing arrests, increasing case closure rates, and decreasing response time. In community-oriented and problem-solving policing, goals include reducing the level of fear in the community, improving the quality of life for residents, doing justice, increasing community participation in police activities, reducing social and physical disorder, building trust and respect, reducing complaints against police officers, identifying and recruiting outside public and private agencies to work with the police and the community, promoting non criminal options, and restoring crime victims. Empirical indicators to assess police processes and outcomes are examined, with emphasis on the need for good police data collection and record-keeping. An example of how to apply program planning and evaluation concepts is presented.
Main Term(s): Police effectiveness
Index Term(s): Community policing; Police community relations; Police crime-prevention; Police policies and procedures; Police responsibilities; Problem-Oriented Policing; Program evaluation; Program planning
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