In the United States, gang problem has remained a stubborn, persistent problem over the decades. Kids associated with gangs are involved in risks that go beyond crime and violence. Chicago city is well known for having the highest number of homicides in the United States, and it's living up to that reputation by already topping in cases of killings for 2017. The Chicago Police Department Bureau of Records has been tracking the crime in Chicago since the beginning of the 20th century (Weisburd & McEwen, 2010). This citys overall crime rate is higher than the United States average. The police department in this city is keeping a list of offenders. The list is derived from a computer logarithm that assigns scores based on shootings, gang affiliations members, arrests and other variables. Computerized mapping is a technique is used by the Chicago Police Department with computer-aided dispatch and record management systems which store and maintain calls for service as well as the incidents, arrest and other data that is potentially mappable. The record is used to predict who is most likely to be shot soon or to shoot someone. This computerized mapping technique has been used around the world in different police departments to support crime analysis activities.
When an arrest occurs, the police generate unique event identification. The ID shows the names of people arrested because it was assumed that people arrested or stopped were linked. It was revealed that most of the people who were killed while committing crimes appeared in a network (Ratcliffe & Chainey, 2013). The record keeping and data collection in Chicago have been successful in identifying individuals that the police were already aware of and it also recognizes people connected to gangs in surprising ways. The method shows that people who were friends or friends of friends with homicide victims were approximately 100 times more likely to be involved in a future homicide than people who werent. People who had been arrested within the previous five years were 50 percent more likely to be killed than people who were not detained during that period (Ratcliffe & Chainey, 2013).
Crime hotspots are the areas with high crime intensity on a map, and they are developed to examine the geographical regions about crime. One way that techniques like Geocoding have helped street gang affiliation is that it has helped explain why crime often is concentrated at specific places (Hirschfield & Bowers, 2001). The maps help the police direct their attention to areas where a lot of effort needs to be expanded, and care is necessary. This is a right way of improving the officers concentrate on areas where the gang are forming and are committing crimes. The maps will show the locations where there are more gang groups or the hot spots for gang groups and those that do not have gang groups.
Identifying gang affiliation more accurately better equips the Chicago police to solve the cases because they have a clear picture of whom they are targeting (Leitner, 2013). The cops get to know who they are going to arrest for the crimes they committed unlike when the police do not have adequate information, and they go capturing and killing innocent persons. Targeting those on the strategic list helps the police in seizing illegal weapons which may be used by the gang members to continue hurting the public. With the police having information about a particular gang, they get to warn the group so that they know they are being watched by the police and this will make them reduce on committing crimes (Weisburd & McEwen, 2015). The effort of having accurate data is focused on helping the police officers on holding the repeat offenders especially those with gun violations accountable. Having enough evidence about an individual or a gang committing crimes is enough for arresting them.
Chicago Police Department is using computerized mapping to better understand the nature and extent of criminal and social problems in the community and improve the allocation of resources. This technique is to help them track illegal activities in the neighborhoods combined with a method known as Geocoding. The police department has been praised for putting together one of the most accessible and easy to use program. Computerized mapping is a valuable tool that has not yet reached its full potential. This is because mapping software has a unique ability to overlay disparate data sets, for example, police incidents data, the location of specific sites like liquor stores, citizen complaints and much more. This technique should be fully embraced to help the police in dealing with the homicide cases in different parts of the world.
Hirschfield, A., & Bowers, K. (2001). Mapping and analysing crime data. London: Taylor & Francis.
Leitner, M. (2013). Crime Modeling and Mapping Using Geospatial Technologies. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
Ratcliffe, J., & Chainey, S. (2013). Gis and crime mapping. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley.
Weisburd, D., & McEwen, T. (2010). Crime mapping & crime prevention. Boulder, Colo.: Lynne Rienner Publishers.
Weisburd, D., & McEwen, T. (2015). Introduction: Crime Mapping and Crime Prevention. SSRN Electronic Journal. http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2629850.
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