Employers could hire criminals unknowingly – despite paying for background checks – because Kansas City police are far behind logging convictions into their database, says the Kansas City Star. Officers could be letting criminals keep stolen guns and stereos because the department is a year behind entering serial numbers into a national database of stolen items. By fixing these problems and others, the Kansas City Police Department could become an outstanding police department, a new study says.
The 369-page report by Berkshire Advisors Inc. focuses on making the department more visible, responsive, and cost-effective. Police Chief Jim Corwin initiated the review after becoming chief in October 2004. The $250,000 report took more than a year to complete. Amng other suggestions: Adding 14 call takers so someone is available to answer 911 calls 99 percent of the time. Nearly one-third of 911 callers get a message telling them to hold. Shifting officers and schedules so officers are available 95 percent of the time when needed. Officers also should arrive within five minutes to 911 calls. Now it takes officers an average of more than 11 minutes to arrive at emergency scenes. Other recommendations focus on getting the most bang for each buck. Each service should be measured, and resources should go to services with the most benefits.