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Law enforcement

“Developed by crime scene experts, this comprehensive, step-by-step guide leads law enforcement through the crucial, first phase of the justice process.” This handbook is divided into five sections: arriving at the scene—initial response/prioritization of efforts; preliminary documentation and evaluation of the scene; processing the scene; completing and recording the crime scene investigation; and crime scene equipment.

Crime Scene Investigation Cover

Biased practices, as the Federal government has long recognized, are unfair, promote mistrust of law enforcement, and perpetuate negative and harmful stereotypes. Moreover—and vitally important—biased practices are ineffective … Law enforcement practices free from inappropriate considerations, by contrast, strengthen trust in law enforcement agencies and foster collaborative efforts between law enforcement and communities to fight crime and keep the Nation safe. In other words, fair law enforcement practices are smart and effective law enforcement practices. Even-handed law enforcement is therefore central to the integrity, legitimacy, and efficacy of all Federal law enforcement activities. The highest standards can—and should—be met across all such activities. Doing so will not hinder—and, indeed, will bolster—the performance of Federal law enforcement agencies’ core responsibilities. This new Guidance applies to Federal law enforcement officers performing Federal law enforcement activities, including those related to national security and intelligence, and defines not only the circumstances in which Federal law enforcement officers may take into account a person’s race and ethnicity … but also when gender, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity may be taken into account. This new Guidance also applies to state and local law enforcement officers while participating in Federal law enforcement task forces" (p. 1). Guidance is provided for: routine or spontaneous activities in domestic law enforcement; all activities other than routine or spontaneous law enforcement activities—never rely on generalized stereotypes, only on specific characteristic-based information, information must be relevant to the locality or time frame, information must be trustworthy, characteristic-based information must always be specific to particular suspects or incidents, reasonably merited under the totality of the circumstances, actions related to national security, homeland security, and all other intelligence activities, training, data collection, and accountability.

Guidance for Federal Law Enforcement Agencies Regarding the Use of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, National Origin, Religion, Sexual Orientation, or Gender Identity Cover

“The goal of the [Center for Social Media] initiative is to build the capacity of law enforcement to use social media to prevent and solve crimes, strengthen police-community relations, and enhance services. IACP’s Center for Social Media serves as a clearinghouse of information and no-cost resources to help law enforcement personnel develop or enhance their agency’s use of social media and integrate Web 2.0 tools into agency operations.” Points of access include: getting started—an introduction to social media, strategy development, policy development, and putting it all into action; technologies; topics-- alerts and notifications, analytics and metrics, community outreach and citizen engagement, crime information, crime prevention, emergency preparedness and response, investigations, legal and legislative, malicious use, mobile, policy, privacy, safety, and security, public relations and reputation management, recruiting, research, strategy, and vetting; resources—case law, case studies, FAQ, fun facts, glossary terms, publications, tools and tutorials, and training and technical assistance; directory of law enforcement agencies that use social media; news; information regarding the initiative; blog; Executive Chiefs’ Corner; IACP’s Social Media Survey results; new on the site; items of interest; and frequently asked questions.

IACP Center Cover

While this guide is written for police departments, sheriff’s offices should find it helpful for developing approaches to interacting with mentally ill people. The step-by-step program design process incorporates seven actions. Additionally, program designs in action are covered showing responses to specific problems and also jurisdictional characteristics.

Improving Responses to People with Mental Illnesses: Tailoring Law Enforcement Initiatives to Individual Jurisdictions Cover

"As a consequence of the failed mental illness treatment system, an increasing number of individuals with untreated serious mental illness are encountering law enforcement officers, sometimes with tragic results. “Justifiable homicides,” [arrest-related deaths (ARDs)] in which an individual is killed by a law enforcement officer in the line of duty, may occur when criminals are being pursued, as in a bank robbery, or when an officer is threatened with a weapon, in other situations" (p. 3). This report examines the available information about justifiable homicides and concludes with recommendations for addressing critical issues involving the transfer of responsibility for mentally ill individuals from mental health professionals to law enforcement personnel.

Justifiable Homicides by Law Enforcement Officers: What is the Role of Mental Illness? Cover

This white paper is based on a series of interviews, buttressed by personal observations, of key players in several jurisdictions where law enforcement officers, Veteran Justice Outreach Specialists from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and community-based agency representatives collaborate to implement approaches to de-escalate veterans in crisis in our communities. These programs are improving public safety. They are creating opportunities for veterans struggling to re-acclimate to civilian life. These traumatized men- and increasingly women- receive the help they need to address mental health issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury, related to their military service.

This is the third publication in the National Institute of Corrections justice-involved veterans compendium project. It shares the views of law enforcement programs at several locations across the country, from small towns to large cities, and highlights how each jurisdiction went about creating and implementing teams or programs to improve practices meant to serve veterans who are in crisis.

Veteran Response Teams are improving outcomes for these veterans and minimizing hostile and sometimes volatile situations for both law enforcement officers and veterans. This paper shares the views of police officers, sheriff’s deputies, corrections professionals, representatives from the VA and other community-based treatment providers, each of whom, in their own words, have stories to tell.

"This Tech Guide is designed to introduce the role of performance measurement . . . and to teach core dynamics of performance management, monitoring, and reporting" (p. 4). Nine chapters are contained in this guide: what performance measurement is and why it is important; establish an integrated performance measurement framework; define mission and strategic performance objectives; establish a performance management framework; establish accountability for performance; develop a data collection plan; analyze, review, and report performance data; use performance information to drive improvement; and build performance management into everyday policing. Sample assessment measures and examples of performance management in justice agencies are also included. This publication is a companion guide to "Law Enforcement Tech Guide: How to Plan, Purchase and Manage Technology (Successfully) (NIC accession no. 018694).

Law Enforcement Tech Guide for Creating Performance Measures That Work:  A Guide for Executives and Managers Cover

"[S]trategies, best practices, recommendations and ideas for successful IT planning and implementation" (p. 3) are provided. This guide is divided into the following parts: seven facts to know before reading this document; build the foundation; conduct a needs analysis; create a project plan; acquire the technology; implement the technology; and maintain the technology. Descriptions of information technology and a glossary are also included.

Law Enforcement Tech Guide: How to Plan, Purchase and Manage Technology (Successfully!) Cover

This report describes how four law enforcement agencies, selected as learning sites, utilized the principles described in “Planning and Assessing a Law Enforcement Reentry Strategy”. “The goals of the learning site project were not to identify a gold standard or the most comprehensive law enforcement-driven reentry program in the nation, but rather to report how diverse agencies implemented strategies in key areas of reentry that many professionals on the front lines of this work face. Although the intended audience is primarily practitioners who have been charged with developing a reentry strategy for their agencies, it is also meant to have value for those individuals and agencies that partner with or hope to partner with law enforcement agencies to ensure that more individuals reenter communities safely and successfully” (p. 3). Three sections follow an executive summary: collaboration—coordination and partnerships; program terms—activities and scope; and data collection and analysis—process and outcome. Also included are profiles of the four law enforcement agencies evaluated.

Lessons Learned Cover

Components laying the foundation of a reentry initiative, developing the initiative, implementing the plan, and making it stick are explained. The 10 elements of a comprehensive and effective reentry strategy are: viability; stakeholder involvement; initiative's priority population; mission, goals, and performance measures; initiative's terms and participant identification; information exchange and systems collaboration; transition planning; enhanced supervision; organizational capacity; and sustainability.

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