Police Chiefs to Trump: Cut Crime, Prisons

A national group led by police chiefs and prosecutors has called on President Donald Trump to adopt policies the organization says can reduce both crime and incarceration and also save taxpayer dollars.

Law Enforcement Experiments With Predictive Policing; Does It Work?

Down the road from Ferguson, Mo., in the St. Louis suburb of Jennings, police precinct commander Jeff Fuesting had expressed interest in predictive policing, so when the department brought in HunchLab, it asked his precinct to roll it out first, reports The Marshall Project. They believed data could help their officers police better and more objectively. By identifying and aggressively patrolling “hot spots,” as determined by the software, the police wanted to deter crime before it ever happened. HunchLab, produced by Philadelphia-based startup Azavea, represents a new version of predictive policing, a method of analyzing crime data and identifying patterns that may repeat into the future.

Cleveland Police Monitor Lays Out “Aggressive” Reform Plan

The monitor tracking Cleveland’s progress under a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department laid out an ambitious plan for 2016, one that requires the city to implement major changes and conduct training, reports the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The first-year plan was filed in federal court yesterday by monitor Matthew Barge. It outlines dozens of deadlines that the city, the monitor and other groups must meet to implement a settlement designed to transform the way the city polices its residents. Barge says the plan is “aggressive” but achievable. He said the work with the city thus far has been more planning-oriented, but residents should see substantial change in the coming months.

Chicago Officers Blame “ACLU Effect” For Making Many Fewer Street Stops

Authorities last year suggested Chicago's spike in gun violence last year was due to the “Ferguson effect” — cops afraid to do their jobs because of the scrutiny after the shooting of a black teenager by a white officer in 2014 in Ferguson, Mo., With Chicago now plagued with an even steeper rise in fatal shootings in January, street cops are offering a new reason: the “ACLU effect,” reports the Chicago Sun-Times. They say the Chicago Police Department's pact with the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois to monitor police stops in greater detail is prompting officers to stop policing, leaving the streets to the criminals and leading to the spike in gun violence. Starting last month, officers have been required to fill out two-page forms documenting every stop of a citizen for everything from traffic violations to investigative stops. They ask for much more information than the previous one-page “contact cards” officers filled out. In interviews with officers and sergeants, a common theme has emerged: Cops say they have avoided making many of the stops they would have routinely done last year.

If Ferguson Accepts Agreement With DOJ, How Would City Pay For It?

The proposed agreement between the U.S. Justice Department and Ferguson, Mo., has been noted for its scope and specificity, but for all its detail, it does not answer two critical questions: How much will reforms to the city's police department and municipal court cost, and how will Ferguson, already burdened by multimillion-dollar deficits, pay for them? The St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the City Council wants to hear from residents. A council vote on the proposal is set for Feb. 9.