Lessons Were Learned From the Term Paper

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d. The Tempe Police Department website aside from featuring maps, also provides a host of other valuable information particularly essential in terms of its objective of community policing. Aside from ongoing reports about crimes and other relevant community-police associated news, the unit also distributes its annual citizen survey findings over the Web, as well as custom reports that are shared by other community agencies and city government units.

e. Criminal and Non-criminal Justice Databases -- the Tempe Police Department has access to a variety of citywide criminal and non-criminal justice databases, the latter including census information, commercial permits and licenses, traffic engineering, and housing data.

How Information Technology Assists the Tempe PD in Community Policing

a. As regards the community itself

Attempting to maintain strong connections with the community, the Tempe PD finds the it network to be invaluable in fostering these connections. The Web site, for instance, is significant in serving as medium between Police and community, particularly since Tempe possesses strong Internet skills. Cell phones, e-mails, and voice messaging are used regularly, whilst TV cable Channel 11 is also employed as interface with the community. An intended Tempe data warehouse system will assist other city agencies to gain direct access to data, causing greater interconnectedness between the Police department and other related justice and non-justice agencies. Such a warehouse will likely also support citizen-driven initiatives.

b. Within the Police Department itself

Information Technology assists the Police Department in various ways:

(i) E-mail capabilities as well as shared reports, such as those produced by the Crime Analysis unit, facilitate communication between the various departments and help expedite information and arrive at effective and shared decision-making.

(ii) the computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system produces crime analysis data, which is the principal source of information on problems that involve scanning, analysis, response, and assessment. This is not only used by sergeants setting beat goals, but also for producing custom reports and amps and limits crime analyses on request (that citizens have to pay a small fee for).

(iii) GIS applications, such as MapInfo help with structuring the beat, reporting activity data within these areas, and setting boundary delineations of the different areas.

(iv) Strategic management - databases help structure and align workload allocation so that there is equilibrium between traditional and COP police activity, as well as with attempts to branch off into more specialized police work.

(v) Other uses -- Laptops that are intended (at the time when the report was written) some time in the future by officers, detectives, and management will provide increased and speedy access to information. Future developments in the computerization of field interview files will be important resources for officers and detectives, whilst the specialized police activity tracking system will also be used by management for budgeting and planning purposes.

Conclusion and Summary

The report issued by the ISTEP on the way networks were utilized by the Tempe PD can offer several valuable insights.

Firstly, the centralization of it in one central city-directed location is helpful to the police force since it frees it from having to maintain and update its services, thereby enabling t to devote its attention to more important and uniquely appropriate concerns.

Secondly, distinction is made between community-directed and specialized policing. The former (a trademark of the Tempe PD) necessitates special technology.

The report also surveyed the network systems most useful to the Tempe P.D. Its findings can be helpful to other similar COP-oriented police institutions.

Finally, and most significantly, it networks are an important and irreplaceable investment for police forces enabling them to not only gain greater efficiency within themselves, but to also promote greater community interface (particularly through their Website), and enhanced communication with other city and relevant organizations.


Abt Associates (1999) Case Study: Tempe, Arizona. Police Department Information Systems Technology Enhancement…

Sources Used in Document:


Abt Associates (1999) Case Study: Tempe, Arizona. Police Department Information Systems Technology Enhancement Project. Report to USDoJ. Available at https://www.abtassociates.com/reports/ISTEP_C2.pdf retrieved December 7, 2010


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