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LEADS Scholar Spotlight — Reducing Gun Violence

Cory Nelson
Cory Nelson, a captain with the Madison Police Department in Wisconsin and a Class of 2015 scholar of NIJ’s Law Enforcement Advancing Data and Science (LEADS) Program, speaks about how he was able to reduce gun violence in Madison thanks to implementing the Koper Curve Theory. He learned of this new principle as part of the LEADS Program when he attended the Evidence-Based Policing Symposium at George Mason University earlier this year.


CORY NELSON: Like many cities, we have seen an increase in gun violence. I think that’s probably a national trend. In Madison, our gun violence this year is up about between and percent over last year.

So I was fortunate enough as part of the LEADS Program to attend the Evidence-Based Policing Symposium at George Mason earlier this year. During that time my eyes were open to something called the Koper Curve. Once I heard about the ideas behind it I thought what a fantastic idea to try to do in Madison.

We’ve identified our “hot spots”—about three or four “hot spots” in the West District of Madison.

We did our concentrated patrols and engagement in our minutes at a time in our “hot spots,” and since we started our program, in the past two months we’ve now seen a percent reduction in gun violence.

The citizens seem to enjoy seeing officers in the neighborhoods. The officers love it because they aren’t required to go into a neighborhood and write tickets or make arrests. They are just required to go in and make contacts.

Lessons learned are that there a lot of good ideas out there that have been tried in other parts of the country. I think LEADS helps open people’s eyes and opens agency’s eyes to the greater things that are going on in the United States that research has been done on that we may or may not know about.

Date Created: May 9, 2018