Cincinnati Police Get Arrest “Goals” Officials Say Aren’t Quotas


Some Cincinnati police officers are upset about goals that list how many arrests and tickets they should write monthly, says the Cincinnati Enquirer. Their bosses say the list is nothing new and nothing more than a performance guideline. One district’s officers were told they should make two felony and 10 misdemeanor arrests and write two tickets for pedestrian violations (such as jaywalking), eight for traffic offenses and 12 for parking each month. Failure to do so can result in a note being put into their personnel files. Lt. Col. James Whalen, assistant chief over patrol officers, described the goals as not quotas but “just basic performance standards. That’s all they are. Every industry has them.”

The new wrinkle, officers said, was that these goals will be monitored through the department’s Employee Tracking System and therefore are more formal and official. Kathy Harrell, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, said so far none of the notes (called ESLs, for Employee Supplemental Logs) has resulted in any discipline. The union doesn’t plan to do anything about the goals now. Harrell said she would reconsider that if an officer who fails to meet the goals is disciplined. Perceived quotas set for police officers have been controversial nationwide. A jury in Los Angeles awarded officers $2 million in April after finding the officers were retaliated against for complaining about quotas. Ticket quotas are illegal in many places as they can prompt police to ticket people unnecessarily just to meet goals.

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