Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Contact appreciated

Long-time readers of the Chief’s Corner know that I frequently hold up a particular problem-oriented policing project as one of the best example of how data, analysis, and a simple-but-clever crime prevention strategy has dramatically impacted a pernicious crime problem in Lincoln. 

Prevent BUrg NRN NFE

I remember some officers being concerned that waking people up in the wee hours of the morning might not be so well received.  On the contrary, our experience is that people are quite appreciative of the effort, and glad that we let them know.  Here’s an example, that I received yesterday:

“Just wanted to give a Thank You to the Officer who was on my doorstep this morning at 2:30 am - I was a little groggy and I'm not even sure I said anything to him.  He came to our door to alert us that we hadn't shut our garage door last night after we came home from the grocery store.  We had the garage door light on and were advertising it quite well when he must have driven by.  I really appreciate the notification and patience while I figured out that my door bell was ringing before I came down stairs!”

I get this kind of feedback regularly, often in person by someone who recognizes me at the restaurant, coffee shop, or hardware store.  It makes quite a lasting impression when Officer Reed Pavelka is introducing himself on your front steps at 2:30 AM, and reinforces the habit of checking the garage door before bedtime for the next six generations. 

So far this year, Lincoln police officers have talked to citizens in their flannel jammies and fuzzy slippers (the citizens, that is, not the officers—I think) 142 times.  It is widely appreciated, and is the cause of the effect evident in that graph. That is a 59% decrease in open garage door burglaries, and it has driven the 27% decline in rate of all residential burglaries over the past three years. 


tech teacher said...

Outstanding, Chief! I'm teaching spreadsheets & charts again, so I'll be sure to share this one w/my high school students.
A number of years ago, I was an LPD volunteer & participated in a campaign to leaflet cars, reminding people about locking cars & stowing valuables out of sight. Educating the public (even at 2:30 a.m.)...way to go LPD!

Anonymous said...

I think it's great when you wake people up and ask them to put the garage door down. Open garages don't just attract crooks to your house, they provide a reward for the crook, and they'll come back that way again, betting that you'll be that dumb in the future. This doesn't do your neighbors any favors either. Same for making your car a soft target for LFA.

It's like carelessly leaving a trash bag meal out for a bear once, because the wandering bear will add that place to its regular route. Most crooks are creatures of habit in much the same sort of way.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to have officers stop by our neighbors to have them shut their 4 doors with the lights on inside and out. Several of us have mentioned it to them, they were not concerned.

Anonymous said...

I had a recent garage burglary. Since then I have installed a Web Cam to constantly monitor the area. I had installed a hardwired security camera system I bought at Lowe's but it didn't last very long and was expensive. My Logitech (C160?) cost less than $20 and has a high quality picture, motion sensing, recording and other capabilities. Software that allows remote monitoring with your laptop or various cell phones is also included. It has more bells & whistles than I will ever use. So far it works great even with just a small night light on at night.
Gun Nut

ARRRRG!!!! said...

This graph could be used in some kind of binge drinking blog.

Anonymous said...

Chief I get up early to hope that you posted something on your blog. I read the other day you were experiencing some writer's block so to speak. So I have a suggestion:

Give a sort of civics 101 course on how a case typically goes from branch to branch of our government. Maybe even putting in behind the scenes negotiations that take place and how a decision is usually made.

I know a police officer from a different state. She said most citizens are very surprised at how much legwork goes into getting a case to trial and making sure justice is served. There is no such thing as an open and shut case.

That could take you a couple of days. lol

Anonymous said...

I bought a sensor with a remote that you can place anywhere in your house that flashes a red light when the door is open, and shows a green light when the door is closed. it was $29. For $99 you can get one that automatically closes the door after a preset time. Way cheaper that getting ripped off. You can find it with google like I did.