Police-Initiated Contacts Fall By 8 million

Highlights There are significant drops in police-initiated public contact. Regardless of demographics, the great majority of people contacted believe that the police officers involved behaved properly. This report supplements data from Gallup indicating that law enforcement is one of the most respected organizations in America. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five […]

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Highlights There are significant drops in police-initiated public contact. Regardless of demographics, the great majority of people contacted believe that the police officers involved behaved properly. This report supplements data from Gallup indicating that law enforcement is one of the most respected organizations in America. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five […]

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from https://www.crimeinamerica.net

Terahertz Millimeter-Wave Scanners

Interesting article on terahertz millimeter-wave scanners and their uses to detect terrorist bombers. The heart of the device is a block of electronics about the size of a 1990s tower personal computer. It comes housed in a musician’s black case, akin to the one Spinal Tap might use on tour. At the front: a large, square white plate, the terahertz…

Interesting article on terahertz millimeter-wave scanners and their uses to detect terrorist bombers.

The heart of the device is a block of electronics about the size of a 1990s tower personal computer. It comes housed in a musician's black case, akin to the one Spinal Tap might use on tour. At the front: a large, square white plate, the terahertz camera and, just above it, an ordinary closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera. Mounted on a shelf inside the case is a laptop that displays the CCTV image and the blobby terahertz image side by side.

An operator compares the two images as people flow past, looking for unexplained dark areas that could represent firearms or suicide vests. Most images that might be mistaken for a weapon­ -- backpacks or a big patch of sweat on the back of a person's shirt­ -- are easily evaluated by observing the terahertz image alongside an unaltered video picture of the passenger.

It is up to the operator­ -- in LA's case, presumably a transport police officer­ -- to query people when dark areas on the terahertz image suggest concealed large weapons or suicide vests. The device cannot see inside bodies, backpacks or shoes. "If you look at previous incidents on public transit systems, this technology would have detected those," Sotero says, noting LA Metro worked "closely" with the TSA for over a year to test this and other technologies. "It definitely has the backing of TSA."

How the technology works in practice depends heavily on the operator's training. According to Evans, "A lot of tradecraft goes into understanding where the threat item is likely to be on the body." He sees the crucial role played by the operator as giving back control to security guards and allowing them to use their common sense.

I am quoted in the article as being skeptical of the technology, particularly how its deployed.

from https://www.schneier.com/blog/

American Confidence in Law Enforcement Very High

Highlights Per Gallup, 85 percent of Americans either have a great deal or some confidence in law enforcement. The media and Congress are at the bottom of the ratings. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state criminal justice agencies. Interviewed multiple times by […]

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Highlights Per Gallup, 85 percent of Americans either have a great deal or some confidence in law enforcement. The media and Congress are at the bottom of the ratings. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state criminal justice agencies. Interviewed multiple times by […]

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from https://www.crimeinamerica.net

The Overwhelming Number of Police Shootings Involve Armed Suspects

  Observations The vast majority of police officers have never fired their guns. The overwhelming number of police shootings involve armed suspects. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state criminal justice agencies. Interviewed multiple times by every national news outlet. Former Senior Specialist […]

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  Observations The vast majority of police officers have never fired their guns. The overwhelming number of police shootings involve armed suspects. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state criminal justice agencies. Interviewed multiple times by every national news outlet. Former Senior Specialist […]

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from https://www.crimeinamerica.net

Rate of Police Officers Decreases By 11 Percent

Introduction The increase in full-time law enforcement officers does not keep pace with the growth in population (8 percent versus 21 percent). The rate of full-time police officers decreased by 11 percent from 1997 to 2016 Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state […]

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Introduction The increase in full-time law enforcement officers does not keep pace with the growth in population (8 percent versus 21 percent). The rate of full-time police officers decreased by 11 percent from 1997 to 2016 Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning public relations for national and state […]

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We Demand That Cops Be Warriors

Observations If the public demands quick resolutions to school and mass shootings or acts of terrorism, they are also insisting on military training and equipment. We train and encourage officers to be warriors because it’s necessary for many aspects of law enforcement. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning […]

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Observations If the public demands quick resolutions to school and mass shootings or acts of terrorism, they are also insisting on military training and equipment. We train and encourage officers to be warriors because it’s necessary for many aspects of law enforcement. Author Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. Retired federal senior spokesperson. Thirty-five years of award-winning […]

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from https://www.crimeinamerica.net

The Media Is Not Our Enemy

Observations Regardless as to your feelings about media relations and the justice system, reporters will let you influence them if you are seen as knowledgeable and trustworthy. It’s in our best interest to fully engage. American cops feel that they are taking a beating, but as a profession, they are the most respected in the […]

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Observations Regardless as to your feelings about media relations and the justice system, reporters will let you influence them if you are seen as knowledgeable and trustworthy. It’s in our best interest to fully engage. American cops feel that they are taking a beating, but as a profession, they are the most respected in the […]

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from https://www.crimeinamerica.net

Hacking Police Bodycams

Suprising no one, the security of police bodycams is terrible. Mitchell even realized that because he can remotely access device storage on models like the Fire Cam OnCall, an attacker could potentially plant malware on some of the cameras. Then, when the camera connects to a PC for syncing, it could deliver all sorts of malicious code: a Windows exploit…

Suprising no one, the security of police bodycams is terrible.

Mitchell even realized that because he can remotely access device storage on models like the Fire Cam OnCall, an attacker could potentially plant malware on some of the cameras. Then, when the camera connects to a PC for syncing, it could deliver all sorts of malicious code: a Windows exploit that could ultimately allow an attacker to gain remote access to the police network, ransomware to spread across the network and lock everything down, a worm that infiltrates the department's evidence servers and deletes everything, or even cryptojacking software to mine cryptocurrency using police computing resources. Even a body camera with no Wi-Fi connection, like the CeeSc, can be compromised if a hacker gets physical access. "You know not to trust thumb drives, but these things have the same ability," Mitchell says.

BoingBoing post.

from https://www.schneier.com/blog/

UK Police Leaders See Safety Risk in Brexit Quagmire

As a Brexit deadline approaches, UK police officers stand to instantly losing vital access to cross-border investigative powers and crucial databases. Police leaders have implored the UK Home Secretary to make contingency plans.

A no-deal Brexit poses a substantial risk to public safety, with police officers instantly losing vital access to cross-border investigative powers and databases, reports the Guardian. In a leaked letter, the national body of police and crime commissioners urge Home Secretary Sajid Javid to immediately draft contingency plans, warning that officers faced “a significant loss of operational capacity” should the UK crash out of the European Union in March. They say that they are becoming “increasingly concerned that such a loss of capacity could pose significant risks to our local communities.” The letter from the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) nonpartisan Brexit working group expresses alarm that the government does not appear ready for such a crisis.

The European commission’s Brexit preparedness unit, operating under its German secretary general, Martin Selmayr, has already said it would “switch off the databases” if a deal was not struck in the coming months. The APCC letter says British police make regular use of 32 different law enforcement and national security measures that depend on EU membership. These include the European arrest warrant – under which 1,735 arrests were made in the UK last year and more than 10,000 people were extradited since 2004 – and the Schengen information system (SIS), a vast database used by police to search for terrorist suspects, missing people and to check vehicle registrations and passport details. The SIS was checked 539 million times by British officers in 2017. UK courts depend on the European criminal records information system to establish the history of foreign offenders.

from https://thecrimereport.org

Austin PD Addresses Lingering Trauma Officers Can Face

Involvement in traumatic events like shootings can lead to years of anxiety and worse for police officers. Austin Police Chief Brian Manley, acting on an increase in alcohol-related incidents among officers this year, says he has made their mental health a priority.

Police officers often endure years of anguish after they are involved in shootings and other traumatic events. The stress, trauma and burnout from these life-or-death encounters have prompted the Austin Police Department to examine whether it provides the necessary resources to police and civilian staff, reports the city’s American-Statesman. Seeing an increase in alcohol-related incidents among officers this year, Chief Brian Manley has made mental health in the department a priority. He has commissioned a group of experts — including physicians, wellness specialists, peer-support officers and chaplains — to look at how to identify symptoms of post-traumatic stress and how to prevent and treat mental health crises.

“This is an issue that is problematic for police departments across this country,” Manley said. “We recognize that there is probably more that we can and should be doing…We care about them as people, and I think that we have a duty to do everything we can to enhance their health and well-being.” During their career, an officer experiences an average of 188 critical incidents, including being beaten, shot at or threatened with a gun, a 2018 study by the Ruderman Family Foundation found. Law enforcement officers are five times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress in their lifetime than the general population, according to the report. First responders, including police and firefighters, also are more likely to die by suicide than in the line of duty, it found. “This is a career where you can’t unsee things that you have seen,” Manley said. “Every officer walks around with visions of things that they have experienced during their career. That impacts you.”

from https://thecrimereport.org