Legislative Analyst Report - Police Investigative Procedures (file # 0120869)



 

OLA # 015-02

TO: Honorable Members of the Board of Supervisors

FROM: Jesse Martinez1, 554-7782

DATE: September 11, 2002

SUBJECT: Police Department Investigative Procedures, File # 020869

SUMMARY OF REQUESTED ACTION

A motion (introduced by Supervisor Newsom) requesting the Office of the Legislative Analyst to prepare a report comparing the policies, best practices and procedures of the top performing homicide divisions of large city Police Departments nationwide. The research should have an emphasis on San Diego, San Jose and Indianapolis.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Our office conducted an analysis of how police departments generally conduct their investigation management, the role of investigator supervisors, and how investigators and cases are managed. Our results are based upon the responses of 4 police departments, 3 in California (San Diego, San Jose and Oakland) and, Indianapolis.

We discovered that the majority of police departments surveyed have written policies or procedures for investigative purposes, including the technological systems required to manage their cases in a proper manner. Cities such as San Diego, San Jose, and Indianapolis appear to have a more technologically advanced system than their counterparts surveyed here. On the other hand, San Francisco emerges as an entity well behind in securing the proper tools for adequate accountability management as viewed by the standards of the law enforcement industry. This was borne out by our survey in the investigation process: investigative support, information technology, and, police-prosecutor relation.

 

BACKGROUND

 

The research literature reveals that in many fundamental respects, the police criminal investigation process has remained relatively unaffected by the significant changes that have occurred in policing and investigations, the crime problem remains elusive.2 That is, research into the elements of what constitutes a `best practice"on policing continues. Indeed, according to the authorities in the field, there are some promising developments. Moreover, it must be recognized that a sweeping descriptive account, such as that presented in this report, is not particularly sensitive to the changes that may be underway.

According to Professor Horvath and others, developments that have occurred in policing over the past three decades include changes in the nature, amount and costs of crime; organizational, administrative and personnel changes in policing; new research on crime and policing; and increasing resource availability for police agencies.3 In addition, according to Horvath, the proportion of agencies with specific investigative units seems a bit higher than was the case in previous years, and the types of investigative units are certainly more diversified and specialized today.

Although it is difficult to discern overall whether relations between agencies have changed, either for better or worse, it is clear that the involvement of agencies in various kinds of multi-jurisdictional task forces is now relatively common.

The police and policing have changed considerably since the 1970s, the proportion of investigators in agencies has remained constant at about 16% of agency sworn personnel resources, and the reasons why agencies organize investigative efforts as they do remain focused on internal (case management) rather than external (community relations) factors. Additionally, in spite of the recognized and well-documented role they play in investigations, patrol officers in most agencies remain quite limited in their performance of investigative tasks.4

Personnel strength, technology and training also continue to be identified as major problems affecting the investigation process, even though significant improvement is reported to have occurred in some of these areas. It is important to emphasize, moreover, that despite the many advances in technology and in the forensic sciences that have occurred in recent years, clearance rates remain relatively stable.

For certain violent crimes, moreover, those rates are declining in some locations, even in the face of more and better technological improvements and personnel enhancements. What accounts for

consistency and variation in clearance rates is poorly understood.5

According to the Uniform Crime Reports (UCR)6clearance rate indicate the rate of arrests made for a particular crime. For example, the homicide clearance rate is determined by dividing the number of homicides reported in a year by the number of arrests made for those homicides. However, definitions are varied by departments. For instance, SFPD and SDPD believe that the FBI"s definitions are much too narrow and each jurisdiction has a different definition of importance for a "clearance." Thus, this report has not focused on the clearance rate phenomena.

CURRENT PRACTICE

The publicized interest in improving the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) goes back at least 65 years and continues to this day.7 Indeed, the recent series in the San Francisco Chronicle exhibited a rather extensive overview of what is perceived as major problems in the SFPD.8

The vast report and assumptions laid out by the Chronicle is beyond our scope of analysis at this time. A few points of interest are worth noting:

 

SFPD

SDPD

SJPD

OAKLANDPD

IND

Sworn officers per 1,000 population.

2.9

1.8

1.6

2.2

1.3

Investigative support per police force.

14%

20%

16%

9%

unknown

Average percent of violent crimes solved (as reported).

26%

63%

61%

46%

52%

 

The statistics depicted in the chart above and reported by the journalists reflect the concern that among the respondents, SFPD has the most sworn officers (2.9), an above average ratio of investigative support per police force (14%), and yet reports the lowest (26%) rate of solved violent cases.

This report offers an overview of the SFPD (see Chart I) and compares select elements deemed by the surveyed police departments and experts in the field to be of importance in ascertaining efficiency in homicide investigative procedures. Specifically, in addition to SFPD, we were able to survey Indianapolis, Indiana, and three other California police departments: San Diego, San Jose, and, Oakland.

POLICY ANALYSIS/ISSUES ANALYSIS

Investigation management, the role of investigator supervisors, and how investigators and cases are managed were not well-documented topics in previous research literature concerning the jurisdictions surveyed. For that reason, useful comparisons are not possible. Our results are based upon the responses of 4 police departments, 3 in California (San Diego, San Jose and Oakland) and, Indianapolis.

It is understood that these departments differ not only by type but also by size, availability of resources for population served, location, and so forth. Any or all of these characteristics, as well as many others, may be related to how agencies perform their investigative function and how effective they are in doing so. Detailed explorations of these differences as they relate to the numerous issues in identified interest areas are necessary and useful9; however, these analyses were beyond the scope of this report. Except in those instances where specific mention is made of differences in results based on department characteristics, the overview to follow ignores these differences and focuses on highlighting the state of the art, if you will, of certain police investigation process: investigative support, information technology, and, police-prosecutor relations.

I. Investigative Support--Our survey regarding investigative support (Organizational structure/Staffing and Crime Analysis/Forensics) are not directly comparable to any data previously reported, there is simply no baseline data available to allow adequate quantifiable performance measurement. We noted slight increases in information technology and the computerization of criminal records and in the computerization of investigative support files; neither of these, though, seems to have developed as fully as necessary. For instance SFPD and Oakland PD remain somewhat less equipped when it comes to having computers and email available for investigative personnel. SDPD, SJPD and Indianapolis stated that they readily have lap top computers and email available for processing investigative documents.

Organizational structure/staffing. In San Francisco, investigations are a separate Bureau consisting of sections divided by major crime type. By way of comparison, San Diego has investigative units divided among policing areas, as well as having general crime detectives assigned to each District Station.

San Diego is more centralized than San Francisco, they have 399 detective overall and eight stations. Each station is divided into two or three districts and each district has a detective sergeant and detectives working on everything in the district level. The central bureau deals with domestic violence, non-street robberies, elder abuse, sex crimes, homicide, child abuse, vice, gangs and narcotics. So, ultimately, half their staff is at the station level.

San Jose may be generally described as centralized as well although some divisions are different like family violence, child abuse, and domestic violence. They only have 6 detectives at night.

Either organizational structures or staffing remain controversial. For instance, according to some law enforcement experts, a centralized (non-rotational) system like San Diego allows for personnel with increased knowledge about the type of crime that they are expected to work. Indeed, they claim that areas like fraud and homicide are very complex so people accumulate knowledge in the time allotted. With serial crimes like robbery, experienced investigators are likely to remember suspects.

Personnel.All of the respondents do not provide any form of formal training for newly appointed investigators. Performance evaluation of investigators rest on the assigned supervisor. San Diego and San Jose appear to evaluate their members more frequently, at 3 or 2 times annually. Whereas, San Francisco, Oakland, and Indianapolis evaluate the personnel either "sporadically" or not at all. San Diego is the only respondent having a formal "career development" matrix.

Incident reports. San Jose has an exemplary system that links driver"s licenses, mug shots, criminal histories and can link cases that have just one named suspect. San Francisco completes similar work with three different systems. The infrastructures are incompatible. San Francisco has 5-6 different report formats including hand-written reports and three different computer-generated report forms for each type of crime.

II. Information Technology--Access to data bases and personal communication devices, both of which have potential for improving police investigative efforts, appear to have taken hold in San Jose, San Diego, and Indianapolis; their effects on enhancing the success of investigative activities remain to be fully documented, even though there is some evidence of their promise (See Chart II).

In San Francisco, case assignments are entered into logbooks. It is not a "computerized" data system. In comparison, San Diego, San Jose, Indianapolis are computerized to the extent that that have network system and each detective is assigned a laptop computer and linked to the system.

The two research areas identified, as those that most directly influence agency policy and/or practice in investigations are computerized databases and forensic science applications.10 Additionally, the two top priorities for future research identified by agencies were technological improvements in investigative techniques and investigator training or personnel.

Much has been touted on the usefulness of the COMPSTAT data base process.11 It can be summarized briefly as a vehicle to: collect, analyze and map crime data and other essential police performance measures on a regular basis and hold police managers accountable for their performance as measured by these data. However, although all the police departments surveyed were familiar with COMPSTAT, a crime analysis and police management process developed by the New York City Police Department, we discovered that they found this system less than useful.

 

Oakland- Police department representatives feel that COMPSTAT is not a valuable tool for homicide and assault investigations, they claim, "it is a planning tool." The police department is proposing a completely new structure and formal development and selection system by the fall of 2002. Indeed, they are changing the system to focus on the major problem solving projects in each of the Police Service Districts (PSAs). By doing this, they hope "to systematically track and evaluate the effectiveness of managerial decision in patrol and investigations." Using existing resources, PSA commanders will be in a position to select a significant long-term crime problem or trend, and develop a sustainable solution.

 

Indianapolis--The Indianapolis Police Department is familiar with COMPSTAT but does not use it. Instead, they use the IMAP (Indianapolis Management Accountability Program) system installed approximately three years ago. They have crime analysts (Criminologists) assigned to the five District Headquarters. Their primary responsibility is to do analysis at the District level so that the individual District Chief has that information and capability close at hand. This fits into their Community Policing initiatives. In addition, the District Chiefs are held accountable to the Chief of Police. They also have a centralized Crime Analysis Unit that looks for trends citywide. This information is passed through to the appropriate investigative units. As an example, the Indianapolis Violence Reduction Partnership (IVRP) utilizes data from the Crime Analysis Unit to formulate agency wide responses to violent crime. IVRP is made up of a cross section of federal, state, and local law enforcement.

The Indianapolis police department feels that COMPSTAT and IMAP certainly have their benefits. However, for a department their size, they found that the time spent by command level staff preparing and meeting on the information was better spent actually addressing the problems that the analysis unit identifies.

Colorado Springs-According to social scientist with the City"s Police Department they are currently developing the Police Accountability and Service Standards Model (PASS) based on the concept of collecting multiple measurements, which provide constructive validity and quantifiable measurements.12 They are familiar with the COMPSTAT model but feel it "simply isn"t that useful" for effective and efficient measurement. The Chart below is a summary of the PASS model.

 

PASS Model-outcome Measurements

Strategic Direction Achievement

Quantitative and qualitative methods using traditional counting methods and/or non-traditional methods via citizen surveys, focus groups, interviews, etc.

Customer satisfaction

Citizen complaints and internal affair investigations

Citizen advisory groups

Community partnerships

Productivity

Outcome/impact evaluation of police services through social science research

Learning or study groups to enhance service delivery

Activity logs sheets

Individual/unit/division performance evaluation

Crime trend analysis

Systems analysis

III. Police-Prosecutor Relations--Our findings show that police departments do not consider police-prosecutor relations to be problematic. This is encouraging since it is that relationship which according to Professor Horvath is at the core of the processing of criminal cases. In addition it is worth noting that according to these experts, perhaps because of changing legal requirements to do so, most agencies now notify victims of crime about developments in their case. Unfortunately, of the police departments surveyed, only San Diego and Indianapolis appear to require proactive contacts with the victims and witnesses.

Although most police departments do not assign specific persons to a prosecutor"s office, they report having regular meetings and ongoing relationships with their prosecutors and do not identify any significant problems in that relationship.

 

In San Francisco, 2 District Attorneys are assigned to handle rebooking and review warrant requests. While in San Diego and San Jose there are usually 10 District Attorneys available to conduct similar functions. San Francisco was the only jurisdiction that indicated an occasional need to "wait for a DA," while the others surveyed claimed this was rarely an issue. In addition, much of the `follow-up" work in other jurisdictions is conducted by District Attorney personnel, quite unlike San Francisco. This according to SFPD is done by the SFPD.

IV. Crime Analysis/Forensics

All the jurisdictions surveyed have access to a crime analysis unit, whereas, San Francisco has none. Indeed, in San Jose lead analysts are assigned to assist in each investigation. In San Diego each unit has a civilian crime analyst. Analysts send out weekly reports on minute and timely evidence disclosures. In addition, these analysts are on-call for additional requests. San Diego bureau-level analysts back up the districts as need arises. All of these analysts are linked to county wide related systems. They have a countywide linkage system, whereas none of San Francisco"s systems are linked.

Forensics units exist in all of the respondents (excluding Oakland) with average delays in securing required evidence for all.

 

CONCLUSION

The purpose of this study was to provide a description of the investigation process and ultimately to disclose a best performance. This research has revealed a picture of the process that, while still not entirely in focus, and is a bit clearer than that seen before. Nevertheless, there are some promising, though isolated, developments, and there is a keen interest in this area on the part of SFPD personnel interviewed.

Our research shows that SFPD has the most sworn officers (2.9), an above average ratio of investigative support per police force (14%), and yet reports the lowest (26%) rate of solved violent cases. We also found that SFPD remains somewhat less equipped when it comes to having computers and email available for investigative personnel. Access to databases and personal communication devices, both of which have potential for improving police investigative efforts, appear to be lacking in San Francisco.

Thus, it is evident that a problem exists. An issue for the Board"s exploration is that this problem of police management begins with the data we capture, how we capture it, and what we do with it. There have been numerous studies and articles published on what law enforcement agencies should be measuring. But the experts agree that no one has proposed a model that incorporates all those various performance measurements into a comprehensive system encompassing "accountability."

Recommendation

Information Technology. The Board may want to examine the COMPSTAT and Colorado Springs" Police Accountability and Service Standards Model (PASS) model to determine which may properly fit the City"s needs13.

Personnel.The Board may want to provide support for examining the prospects of instituting formal training for newly appointed investigators and performance evaluation procedures of investigators. The Board may want to have a formal "career development" matrix researched for appropriateness.

Reports. The Board may want to find ways to assist in establishing a compatible system for linking pertinent data bank systems.

 

CHART I

Police Departments-Overview

ISSUE

SFPD

SDPD

SJPD

OAKLAND

INDIANAPOLIS

Organizational structure of the investigative function

Separate Bureau consisting of sections divided by major crime type.

Specialized investigative units divided among 3 Policing Areas

(Bureaus). Additionally, general crime detectives assigned to each of 8 district stations reporting to station C.O.

Separate Bureau consisting of 12 sections divided by major crime type.

Separate Bureau with Homicide, special investigations. All other investigations are in the patrol bureau. OPD is working to improve investigative performance

Divisions are made of several Branches by crime type.

Staffing

313 Inspectors. 50 assigned to non-investigative units.

240 Detectives assigned to specialized investigative units. 104

Assigned to eight area commands (stations). 55 assigned to non-

investigative units.

220 investigators composed of patrol officers and sergeants. 20 positions were unfilled at this time.

67 with 3 assigned to administrative

tasks.

Detecives; not a merit rank but rather an assignment basis.

Transfer to other units

Based on seniority on P-1 list. Chief can override.

Unit commanders of specialized units can choose any detective who has satisfied the training and experience requirements for that unit.

Detectives typically work their way up from Station to DV, Vice, Gangs

to "Central" Investigations. Can request a transfer but must be"chosen."

Unit commanders of investigative units can choose any officer or Sergeant who meets the requirements for that unit. Investigators serve for 3 years then rotate back to Patrol. They can then reapply after 1 year in Patrol, but must wait 3 years if the reappointment to the section in which they already had served.

Seniority without Chief override

By officer request and approval of the Chief.

Personnel Evaluations

Used sporadically. Not a factor in transfers or promotions.

Each member is evaluated by a supervisor 3 times per year Copies of 2 most recent evaluations are included in Detective

and Sgt. application "package." Supervisors must document performance that is below standards or exceeds standards so most members are rated "met standard." It does not appear evaluations play a major role in the promotional process.

Evaluations twice yearly. Negative evaluations can be a factor in selection for investigative units.

Used sporadically. Not a factor in transfers or promotions.

N/A

Career Development

N/A

SDPD has published a "Career Development Matrix" which lists

requirements and desirable qualifications for each assignment. All Sgts are expected to assist officers in obtaining any training they desire and also to arrange, when possible, to have officers temporarily assigned to other units to gain desired experience.

N/A

No formal system. Old informal system was destroyed when we went to patrol based general investigator.

N/A

On-call

Homicide (2) Sexual Assault, Child Abuse. NIU covers other crime types during non business hours. Inspectors get 1 hour OT for every 8 on-call.

No "Night Unit." Homicide, Sex Crimes, Robbery have "teams" on call. Homicide responds to call outs with entire team, Det Sgt, 3 Detectives, 1 civilian Evidence Tech. Each station has 1 Det Sgt for one month at a time (get called out rarely). On-call members received 1 day off for every 2 weeks on-call up to a max of 8 days off per year.

per year

Homicide (2 CSI, 1 lt.); Sexual Assault (1Sgt. & 1 Officer); NIU responds to other scenes and initiates investigations. The case will then be taken by on-coming day watch unit.

No compensation for being on-call for Homicide. Hour for hour on callouts.

Homicide (2) Sexual Assault (2), Child Abuse (2) Compensation is about the same, using a different formula.

Homicide-24 hours

Sex crimes-20 hours

Homicide provides initial response after hours.

Incident reports

Taken by patrol officers at scene or at counter. Some reports taken by Teleserve (staffed by clerks). Reports hand written or computer re-entered by clerks into CABLE.

Routine reports taken by Telephone Response Unit. Dispatch gets repot-tee"s phone number and light duty sworn member calls victim back to take report. Other low priority reports taken in field by civilian generated then Community Service Officers (one assigned to each shift per station.) 90% of reports entered directly into computerized system making them

available on-line citywide.

CABLE. 90% of reports entered directly into computerized system making them

available on-line citywide.

Citizens can make police reports on line, via telephone, faxes for runaways, at a community-policing center, or to an officer. Reports are entered into a RMS. All officers and investigators have access to the system.

Hand written reports by Patrol officers,

citizens, and light duty personnel assigned to communications division.

By patrol Officers & District Aides; reports are phoned in to transcriptions for entry in the case reporting system.

Report routing & assignments

Reports coded at district station and sent to Record Room" where copies are put into unit mailboxes. Cases then reviewed by case assignment officer who assigns cases meeting criteria.

Computerized reports are electronically routed to district station of occurrence and specialized unit if appropriate. Det Sgt reviews all reports and assigns those meeting criteria. All felonies "against the

person" is assigned regardless of solvability factors.

Reports are routed to investigative unit. Det Sgt. reviews all reports and assigns those meeting criteria. Felonies are assigned on the basis of solvability factors.

All reports go to Report Reproducing, then are routed in accordance with the report-detailing guide. System is manual paper system. Expensive and inefficient

Case reports have `flags" to notify the appropriate detectives.

Review and assignment is by "booking"

Sargeant.

Case Management System

Case assignments entered into logbooks. Some units have separate database to track case assignments and status.

Det Sgt gives copies of case assignments to clerical personnel who enter info into computer database. Any member citywide can see which detective has case and what the status of the case is.

Clerical personnel enter info into computer database. Any member citywide can see which detective has case and what the status of the case is. Most units have civilian analysts assigned to them. The analysts run most computer queries and determine crime patterns and

Same as SFPD

Use a Centralized Data Base.

Written investigative guidelines

Various bureau and Unit Orders. Informant manual.

Detailed Investigative Procedures Manual for all detectives.

Additionally, each specialized unit has its own "Operations

N/A

New standards under development. Informant manual. General orders

Have General Orders & Unit procedures.

Investigative "teamwork" and supervision

Inspectors may have partners to share a vehicle but typically work cases alone. Homicide Inspectors work as partners with one Inspector becoming the case manager. Inspectors report to a Lt. who may manage anywhere from 8 to 20 Inspectors

Detectives use a team approach with a Det. Sgt. supervising a team of three or four detectives. Homicides and other serious cases are handled as a team with the Sgt. assigning duties and one members designated to keep the "book" (case file). Station detectives are under

the command of the station captain but the Det. Sgts run the investigative operation

Each unit has sergeants who supervise investigators as well as handling cases themselves. Each unit has a lieutenant. CSI has 7 members and are assigned to Homicide. Routine crime scenes are

processed by patrol officers who have been trained by CSI.

Similar to SFPD.

They take the cars home. Most units work in squads. Case is assigned to a "lead" detective on a rotating basis.

Victim/witness contacts

Inspectors expected to make telephone contact with victim. Not expected to visit crime scene unless "called out."

Detectives required to make face-to-face contact with all victims of violent crimes or explain in writing why they were unable. Detectives are expected to make some effort to locate witnesses at each crime scene-"knock on some doors."

Investigators only respond to major scenes (Home invasion, homicides, fatal hit and runs, etc.). Most contacts handled by telephone or by parties responding to the unit"s office.

Contact attempts are questionable and manpower does not allow contact on all assigned offences. Homicide, Sexual Assault, and Child Abuse must visit scene.

All the victims are contacted by telephone at the least.

Caseload

Goal in most units is not to exceed 1 "work-up"case per day per Inspector (averaged over a month). Depending on the unit, Inspectors may have between 10 and 30 open cases at any

given time.

Station detectives receive 25 cases per month, 1 i/2 per day. May have 20-40 open at any time. Sex Crimes Det. average 2 cases per week.

Investigators average about 1-½ cases per day.

Assignments based on solvability. Caseload for most investigators in excess of 50 per month. Child abuse 70 per month. Homicide 10 to 15 per year. Our caseloads are not a good measure for comparison. SFPD numbers are closer to effective level.

Varies by Unit. Burglary/larceny at least 1 a day. Homicide is based on active cases, 1-2.

Case review

Bureau Order calls for review by OIC if a case is open for 30 days. Periodic reviews after that.

Detectives required to inactivate or cancel (close) case within 20 days. Except for certain units (i.e.: Homicide, Financial Crimes, etc.). Det. must give sound justification for keeping it open longer.

Sergeants and lieutenants review cases.

Same as SFPD.

At least every 30 days.

Interviews/Investigative reports

Victim and witness interviews are usually audio taped and summarized in the case chronology. Some units have interview rooms, but few have

videotaping capability

In serious cases victim and witness interviews are usually audio taped and summarized in an "investigative report" videotaping capability; access to a video-equipped interview room.

Victim and witness interviews are usually audio taped and summarized in an "investigative report." All units have access to an interview room.

Suspect interviews are audio taped, most witness statements are hand written. Soft interview room for children and sexual assault victims. Secure interview rooms for suspects. Video taping capabilities in new Eastmont facility due to open in September. Protocol under development

Victim/witness is taped only in serious crimes. Audio/video available department wide.

Case closure process

Inspectors inactivate a case with an entry in their chronology To "close" a case, Inspectors must complete a supplemental report using one of the SFPD"s 15 clearance codes. Patrol arrest cases are "cleared" when received by OIC after rebooking is complete.

Detectives must complete a form to request inactivation of a case. The form contains a summary of investigative steps taken and is signed off by Det Sgt and Lt. Another form must be completed to close a case SDPD uses the term "canceling" a case instead of closing or clearing.) Cases are cancelled as 1) Unfounded, 2) Arrest made, or 3) Exceptional (victim refuses or DA refuses to prosecute.)

Cases are closed/cleared for arrests and exceptional clearances. In addition cases can be closed as "unworkable".Cases

Inactivated are counted as closed.

Similar Patrol arrest are clear after charging or refusal by DA

Cases are cleared by an arrest, clean up statements & leads exhausted. Supervisor approval.

Closure by "M.O."

It has not been the practice in the SFPD to close cases by "Arrest" unless the suspect was actually charged in that incident, even if the MO was the same.

Detectives will close all the cases in an entire crime series if the MO is the same, it appears the same suspect is responsible, and he is arrested in one or more of the cases.

Detectives will close all the cases in an entire crime series if the MO is the same, it appears the same suspect is responsible, and he is arrested in one or more of the cases.

Data systems and clerical staff to maintain M.O. files does not exist. System is under redevelopment for implementation with new records management system and laptop reporting system.

Additionally, Repeat offender-targeting system is being developed to maximize charging for identified repeat offender.

N/A

Use of 849 (b) PC

(..can release arrested person due to insufficient grounds to file a complaint..)

Not used by Inspectors with regard to patrol arrests. All cases taken to DA as originally charged.

If a detective feels a case was incorrectly charged he/she can send a form to the jail and amend or drop the charges. Charges are rarely dropped in this fashion but they often reduce cases to misdemeanors or place more correct felony charges on the suspect.

Same as SFPD.

Investigators responsible for release where elements clearly do not exist. Most taken to DA but not required.

N/A

Rebooking process

All felony arrests are assigned to an Inspector as per for follow-up and to complete a rebooking package in triplicate. Inspectors present case to DA face-to-face. Misdemeanor arrests go directly to the DA. Narcotics arrests are all handled by one rebooking officer.

Felony arrests are assigned to station or central detectives as per guidelines. Detectives complete a (rebooking) folder contains a copy of the arrest report, a witness list, an Investigator"s Follow-up report and rap sheets. (One copy of everything.) Unless the case is complex, or the time limit to rebook is running out, the detective to the DA"s Office for review. If suspect out on OR then package not due for 10 days.

Similar to SFPD.

All arrests are assign to investigator who prepare charging packet for felony and misdemeanors.

Narcotics arrests are all handled by 2 rebooking officer.

Similar to most jurisdictions. Felonies assigned to a detective. Misdemeanors go to prosecutors directly. Detectives present cases face to face.

DA availability

Normally 2 DAs available to handle rebooking and review warrant requests. Strict limits on and hours Inspectors can request warrants.

Usually 10 DA"s available to review arrests and warrant requests. Rarely any wait time to see a DA.

Usually 10 DA"s available to review arrests and warrant requests. No wait time to see a DA.

Dedicated Charging DA"s very available, but often have multiple investigators in office at same time. Warrants requested during normal business hours. Ramey warrants over phone from judge on major cases after hours.

A Prosecutor is assigned to each of the five

District HQs.

On call prosecutor 24 hours, no limits.

Role of DA Investigators

Assigned to various functions throughout the DA"s Office. Usually do not get involved with SFPD cases either pre or post charging.

Perform follow-up investigations for the DA"s Office charged. Detectives may also conduct post charging they have: 1) a special interest in the case, or 2) the OIC determines it is something they should have done in the first place.

Carry out follow-up investigations for the DA"s Office once a case is charged. Detectives may also conduct post charging investigations if they have 1) a particular interest in the case, or 2) It is something to correct.

Same as SFPD.

Grand Jury investigators are sworn officers on detail.

Investigative support

On-call Inspectors provided with Dept. vehicle 24/7 and cell phone. Each unit has one clerk but most typing done by Inspectors. Most have access to a computer but only about half have one personally assigned.

On-call detectives have take home car & cell phone. Most units have three clerks who will do typing for members but most Det"s do their own word processing on assigned computers which are networked and loaded with department forms. All members have Dept. email.

On-call Homicide detectives have take home car & cell phone. Cars, radios and cell phones are signed out when needed. Each investigator has a laptop computer and standard computer. All computers are

networked into RMS. All members have Dept. email.

Similar to SFPD.

Can take cars

home. Have laptops issued to some units; aides and computers are available. Cell phones are also available for crimes against persons.

Forensics

CSI Unit, composed of sworn members, conducts evidence collection when requested and performs fingerprint comparisons. Civilian crime Lab does analysis of narcotics, ballistics, blood, DNA, etc. Substantial delay in the time for DNA requests.

Community Service Officers and Senior Volunteers process routine burglary scenes. Each station has patrol officers trained as Field Evidence Techs to do more complex scene. Each of the 5 Homicide Teams has a civilian evidence technician who can respond crime scenes when requested. DNA results provided by Crime Lab within a few weeks.

Routine crime scenes processed by patrol officers who have served in CSI. CSI personnel respond to all homicides and major crime scenes at the direction of the OIC of Homicide.

Same as SFPD, except for high profile cases, where DNA turnaround is 72 hours. Average down from 12 months to 3 months. Target is 6 weeks by 2005.

Latent print turnaround now down to 72 hours of CALID quality prints. Drug analysis in 24 hours. Facility is outdated and designed for staff of 4. 18 currently working out of facility

Forensics is a separate agency. PD does have field evidence technicians for minor crimes.

There is a delay for narcotics, ballistics and blood DNA.

Crime Analysis Unit

N/A

14-member crime analysis unit reviews incident reports and provides weekly reports on crime trends and patterns. They respond to inquiries from any member and assist detectives with a variety of computer applications. Each station has an analyst assigned as a liaison.

There is a lead analyst assigned to Investigations. Investigative units have one or more analysts.

Crime analysis unit of 5 civilians 4 officers, all trained in crime analysis via 9-month program in Sacramento. Data systems minimal. San Diego has what I consider the best in the State. Including their own programmers to ensure systems give the department necessary customization.

Criminologists are

Assigned to Districts.

Have a Centralized Crime Analysis Unit.

Communication among Investigative units

Weekly staff meetings. Most units in proximity and information sharing are encouraged.

At 0830 hours each morning all stations and investigative units participate in a conference call to review any major incidents that took place the previous 24 hours.

Weekly staff meetings. All units located in same bldg. and share information.

Fragmented by split chain of command. CID commander holds weekly meeting with Patrol base investigative Lt.

Weekly Divisional staff meetings.

 

CHART II

INVESTIGATIVE PRACTICES

ISSUE

 

SFPD

SDPD

SJPD

OAKLAND

INDIANAPOLIS

Investigative Support

Staffing

313 Inspectors. 50 assigned to non-investigative units.

240 Detectives assigned to specialized investigative units. 104

assigned to eight area commands (stations). 55 assigned to non-

Investigative units.

220 investigators composed of patrol officers and sergeants. 20 positions were unfilled at this time.

67 with 3 assigned to administrative

tasks.

88 detectives (22 in Homicide)

 

support

On-call Inspectors provided with Dept. vehicle 24/7 and cell phone. Each unit has one clerk but most typing done by Inspectors. Most have access to a computer but only about half have one personally assigned.

On-call detectives have take home car & cell phone. Most units have three clerks who will do typing for members but most Det"s do their own word processing on assigned computers which are networked and loaded with department forms. All members have Dept. email.

On-call Homicide detectives have take home car & cell phone. Cars, radios and cell phones are signed out when needed. Each investigator has a laptop computer and standard computer. All computers are

networked into RMS. All members have Dept. email.

Similar to SFPD.

Can take cars home. Have laptops, aides, computers & cell phones.

 

Information Technology--Report routing & assignment

Reports coded at district station and sent to Record Room" where copies are put into unit mailboxes. Cases then reviewed by case assignment officer who assigns cases meeting criteria.

Computerized reports are electronically routed to district station of occurrence and specialized unit if appropriate. Det Sgt reviews all reports and assigns those meeting criteria. All felonies "against the

person" is assigned regardless of solvability factors.

Reports are routed to investigative unit. Det Sgt. reviews all reports and assigns those meeting criteria. Felonies are assigned on the basis of solvability factors.

All reports go to Report Reproducing, then are routed in accordance with the report-detailing guide. System is manual paper system. Expensive and inefficient

"Flags" on case

reports to notify

appropriate

Detectives.

Reviews and

assignments by the `booking" Sergeant.

 

Forensics

CSI Unit, composed of sworn members, conducts evidence collection when requested and performs fingerprint comparisons. Civilian crime Lab does analysis of narcotics, ballistics, blood, DNA, etc. Substantial delay in the time for DNA requests.

Community Service Officers and Senior Volunteers process routine burglary scenes. Each station has patrol officers trained as Field Evidence Techs to do more complex scene. Each of the 5 Homicide Teams has a civilian evidence technician who can respond crime scenes when requested. DNA results provided by Crime Lab within a few weeks.

Routine crime scenes processed by patrol officers who have served in CSI. CSI personnel respond to all homicides and major crime scenes at the direction of the OIC of Homicide.

N/A

A separate agency; have filed evidence technicians for minor crimes;

A delay for DNA,

narcotics and

ballistics.

Police-Prosecutor relationship

DA availability

Normally 2 DAs available to handle rebooking and review warrant requests. Strict limits on and hours Inspectors can request warrants.

Usually 10 DA"s available to review arrests and warrant requests. Rarely any wait time to see a DA.

Usually 10 DA"s available to review arrests and warrant requests. No wait time to see a DA.

Dedicated Charging DA"s very available, but often have multiple investigators in office at same time. Warrants requested during normal business hours. Ramey warrants over phone from judge on major cases after hours.

DA assigned to

each District.

Have an on-call

Prosecutor

24 hours.

 

Role of DA Investigators

Assigned to various functions throughout the DA"s Office. Usually do not get involved with SFPD cases either pre or post charging.

Perform follow-up investigations for the DA"s Office charged. Detectives may also conduct post charging they have: 1) a special interest in the case, or 2) the OIC determines it is something they should have done in the first place.

Carry out follow-up investigations for the DA"s Office once a case is charged. Detectives may also conduct post charging investigations if they have 1) a particular interest in the case, or 2) It is something to correct.

Same as SFPD.

Investigators are sworn officers.

Personnel/Training

Personnel Evaluations

Used sporadically. Not a factor in transfers or promotions.

Each member is evaluated by a supervisor 3 times per year Copies of 2 most recent evaluations are included in Detective

and Sgt. application "package." Supervisors must document performance that is below standards or exceeds standards so most members are rated "met standard." It does not appear evaluations play a major role in the promotional process.

Evaluations twice yearly. Negative evaluations can be a factor in selection for investigative units.

Used sporadically. Not a factor in transfers or promotions.

N/A

 

Career Development

N/A

SDPD has published a "Career Development Matrix" which lists

requirements and desirable qualifications for each assignment. All Sgts are expected to assist officers in obtaining any training they desire and also to arrange, when possible, to have officers temporarily assigned to other units to gain desired experience.

N/A

No formal system. Old informal system was destroyed when we went to patrol based general investigator.

N/A

 

Victim/witness contacts

Inspectors expected to make telephone contact with victim. Not expected to visit crime scene unless "called out."

Detectives required to make face-to-face contact with all victims of violent crimes or explain in writing why they were unable. Detectives are expected to make some effort to locate witnesses at each crime scene-"knock on some doors."

Investigators only respond to major scenes (Home invasion, homicides, fatal hit and runs, etc.). Most contacts handled by telephone or by parties responding to the unit"s office.

Contact attempts are questionable and manpower does not allow contact on all assigned offences. Homicide, Sexual Assault, and Child Abuse must visit scene.

All victims are contacted by phone initially. A call-out is determined by

the patrol officer.

 

 

CHART III-COMPSTAT

QUESTION

OAKLAND

Successes in the using COMPSTAT.

COMPSTAT is not a valuable tool for homicide and assault investigations, it is a planning tool.

Problems in using the COMPSTAT.

COMPSTAT is more about accountability than quality.

Have you experienced a drop in crime due to the use of COMPSTAT?

It"s been effective in focusing resources and response to crime trend for patrol personnel.

How is COMPSTAT part of your managerial philosophy

It helps to focus on crime reduction and response to trends. It can be used to look at patrol and investigative cooperation and ensure the differing functions are supporting one another.

Has COMPSTAT been oversold as a "crime reduction" tool?

Yes! It is a good accountability tool, but too subjective.

How many and what kind of additional personnel (e.g., sworn, civilian, private sector) would be needed for such a program?

The Chief must take a regular and active role in the process. A trained and qualified crime analysis section with the necessary data systems, projection system and mapping software for on-the-fly mapping changes.

How was COMPSTAT best adapted to meet your needs?

We are changing our system to focus on the major problem solving projects in each of our Police Service Districts (PSAs). We will be able to systematically track and evaluate the effectiveness of managerial decision in patrol and investigations. Using existing resources, PSA commanders will select a significant long-term crime problem, and develop a sustainable solution.

What was the approximate timetable for implementation?

It took about six months. We had to find a facility big enough for all the participants, select and implement the technology, and design the implementation.

9) What is the real costs (start-up/recurring)?

$20,000 on the facility modifications, including lighting, data backbone, sound system, and furniture. Another $10,000 on computers, projectors, and software. We still need better software that can make the system more dynamic. We also had a good crime analysis team that was being trained and $150,000 grant that built our crime analysis data system.

1 I wish to acknowledge the significant contribution on this report by Clare M. Nolan, graduate student at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley.

2 A National Survey of Police Policies and Practices, Frank Horvath and Robert T. Meesig, School of Criminal Justice, Michigan State University, November 2002.

3 A Content Analysis of Criminal Justice, F. Horvath, 2001.

4 See A National Survey, Horvath; What works in policing?, J.E. Eck, Criminal Investigation, 1992.

5 An Analysis of Variables Affecting the Clearance of Homicide, Charles Wellford and James Cronin, Justice Research and Statistics Association, October 1999.

6 Uniform Crime Reports, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Washington, DC

7 See the listing in "Here we go again," The San Francisco Chronicle, June 7, 2002, p. A29.

8San Francisco Chronicle, May 19, 2002

9 A National Survey of Police Policies and Practices Regarding the Criminal Investigation Process, Frank Horvath, et al, School of Criminal justice, Michigan State University, November 2001

10 See Horvath, et al, and, California Competitive Cities: A report card on efficiency in service delivery in California, Geoffrey F. Segal, Adrian T. Moore, Reason Public Policy Institute, February 2002, Los Angeles, California

11New York Daily News, "Use of COMPSTAT against Terror,"November 4, 2002; Innovations in American Government, Harvard University, 1996 Award; San Francisco Examiner, "S.F. Police Need Modern Tools,"July 30, 2002

12 Lorne C. Kramer, Chief of Police, and Mora L. Fiedler, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Police Department, "Beyond the Numbers: How Law Enforcement Agencies Can Create Learning Environments and Measurement Systems," The Police Chief, April 2002.

13 At the time of this publication and too late to incorporate is the system incorporated by Baltimore, MD. A system called CitiStat is an accountability tool based on the COMPSTAT program pioneered in the New York City Police Department and noted in this report.