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Investigations in the Community Policing Context

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 2001
208 pages
This report investigates the nature and structure of the investigative function in the community policing context.
The literature on criminal investigations has consisted largely of studies regarding the effectiveness of investigators, with little attention to the relationship between community policing and investigations. Detectives are commonly a highly organized work group -- often perceived as conservative, insular, and elitist -- and administrators who attempt to change investigators' roles often expect to encounter substantial resistance. This study covered the history of investigations, the effectiveness of investigations, procedural and programmatic changes made to improve the effectiveness, and issues facing police agencies as they address the role of the investigator in community policing. Data came from a national survey and site visits with seven selected agencies. Almost all (95.8 percent) of the responding municipal agencies had implemented or were implementing at least some aspects of community policing. The report describes structural changes, chain of command, procedural changes, and functional changes in the seven sites visited. The report recommends follow-up site visits, evaluation of changes, and examination of detectives' participation in problem solving. Notes, tables, references, appendixes

Date Published: July 1, 2001