I don’t know how to handle this Writing question and need guidance.
Decisions made at the administrative level may be influenced by many factors; these include suggestions or directives by elected officials, legal advisors, or court mandated change. You are in a position to influence change, to construct change, and to ultimately implement change. Which factor or factors do you consider to be your most significant challenge? What advice could you give on how to handle influential groups who may be at odds, such as a Mayor and a City Council?
Captain Johnson is in charge of the Operations Bureau of the Greenfield Police Department. The Operations Bureau includes the Patrol Division, the Traffic Division, and other uniformed functions within the department. The uniformed officers assigned to this Bureau are the most visible to the public. While reviewing activity logs and police reports, Captain Johnson detects an increase in residential burglaries during the previous month. The burglaries are being reported on the afternoon shift when residents return home from work. Most of the burglaries are occurring in one neighborhood. Captain Johnson contacts the Evening Shift Patrol Division Lieutenant to inquire about the burglaries. The Lieutenant tells Captain Johnson there is awareness of the problem and has been assigning officers to patrol the neighborhood. The Lieutenant notes that the burglaries are all on Thursdays and Fridays, but adds, “It’s like trying to find a needle in a hay stack.”
Captain Johnson contacts the Investigative Bureau Commander, also a Captain, and learns that the Investigators are also aware of the increase in burglaries. The Investigative Bureau Captain tells Johnson that they have fingerprints from several of the burglaries, but no suspects. The Investigative Bureau contains the following Divisions: Investigations (Detectives), Crime Scene (CSI), Youth Services (Juvenile) and Narcotics.
When Captain Johnson talks to the Day Shift Patrol Lieutenant it is noted that the supervisor isn’t aware of an increase in burglaries because none have been reported during the day shift. The Lieutenant says they have been dealing with loitering and disorderly conduct problems at the shopping center rather than increasing neighborhood visibility. Captain Johnson realizes that patrolling and reactive investigations usually have a minimal effect on preventing burglaries. It is time for a new approach.
For reference: in this Department Sergeants are Unit or Squad supervisors; several Units or Squads make up a Division. Divisions are commanded by Lieutenants, who report to Captains, who are Bureau Commanders. This may vary in other departments based on size or other organizational needs.
1 How might Captain Johnson address the burglary problem more effectively? Are there communications issues that need to be overcome?
2 If Captain Johnson decides on a problem solving approach, who should be included in a group of problem solvers? Is this an opportunity to involve the community? What type of messaging should be created, and how should it be distributed? Be creative.
Captain Hayley is responsible for the annual training plan for the Greenfield Police Department. During Chief Slaughter’s crime-fighting tenure, Captain Hayley scheduled frequent training for all officers in the use of firearms, defensive tactics and enforcing criminal statutes. Training was scheduled in pursuit driving and emergency medical response on a two-year rotation. Specialized training was provided to individual officers on an “as needed” basis. The training was usually conducted in an academy setting. Chief Slaughter required the officers to train and qualify with their firearms every month—three times more often than required by POST (Police Officers Standards and Training). As a result, the department won the state shooting competition 10 years in a row. During those 10 years, Greenfield officers have fired their weapons on duty only to dispatch injured animals. Ammunition and officer overtime for training at the firearms range were the largest expenditures in the department’s training budget. The new chief has asked Captain Hayley to develop a training program with more emphasis on developing human resources and community policing. The Chief suggested that some of the funds devoted to firearms training be used for other training.
1 Captain Hayley should consider some fundamental changes in the training program if he wants to emphasize a community-policing strategy rather than a crime-fighting strategy. How might the blend of training versus educating change? Is there any concern about changing the financial commitment to the existing training, or any concern about a change of emphasis or priority?
2 Suggest three specific topics for Captain Hayley’s new training curriculum that relate to community policing. How do you develop the topics? How do you identify the needs, and how do you engage community leaders in developing a curriculum to best meet the needs?