Sacramento —like New York, Houston, Miami, St. Louis, and other cities before it— is looking at the next step: the launch in October of a “real-time crime center,” a central location from which officers could monitor all their existing surveillance technologies, PODs included. The idea is that consolidating information about criminal activity —from stalking complaints to potential lone wolf terrorist attacks— would make law enforcement more effective at investigating and perhaps preventing some incidents. The process would also promote accountability and transparency at a time of rising tension between police and the black community, providing evidence of both police and suspect behavior during tense encounters, proponents say.
With the recent protest in Ferguson, MO over the shooting of Michael Brown and the heavy handed response of the Ferguson police department, bringing out mine-resistant ambush protected vehicles (MRAP), tear gas, snipers, and camouflaged dressed cops, much focus has been put on the militarization of the police force. Los Angeles is no stranger to a militarized police force. The LAPD created the first SWAT team in the nation in 1967. You could say L.A. started the trend in police force militarization.
Cutting edge data-driven analysis directs Los Angeles patrol officers to likely future crime scenes – but critics worry that decision-making by machine will bring a ‘tyranny of the algorithm.’ The Los Angeles Police Department, like many urban police forces today, is both heavily armed and thoroughly computerized. The Real-Time Analysis and Critical Response Division in […]