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Advanced Crime Mapping Topics

NCJ Number
Date Published
June 2001
136 pages

This document contains a collection of papers derived from the first Advanced Crime Mapping Topics Symposium.


Crime mapping and analysis has been a burgeoning area of law enforcement in recent years. Policing has undergone an evolution in which decisions regarding crime fighting and prevention are based on data and applied research. The document contains four main sections, each dealing with a different function of crime analysis. Section 1 contains four papers that provide verifiable and replicable methodologies for performing Investigative Analysis. One paper develops a set of standardized practices for use in identifying and resolving series, while another paper presents “cause analysis” as a means of resolving series and as a mechanism to prevent future crimes. A third paper presents an example of how Geographical Information System (GIS) was effectively used to analyze the relationships between a serial rapist and the mode of transportation involved in his crimes. Section 2 focuses on issues surrounding the use of GIS for analysis of discrete sites, which are defined as a “predefined area or structure with unique characteristics that differentiate it from its surroundings.” The papers in this section present a step-by-step guide for creating a discrete site basemap for a discrete environment; they provide the rationale behind discrete site analysis and review the steps necessary to accomplish it; and they measure the barrier effects on criminal activity. Section 3 contains papers that focus on merging systematic research and analysis techniques with police practice. The papers discuss the increasing role of crime analysis in research and problem solving; the use of primary qualitative data in problem solving research and analysis; and the use of GIS data to develop problem solving and evaluation measures. An example is provided of the use of spatial analysis and GIS for developing and evaluating a law enforcement response to a robbery problem in Baltimore County, MD. Section 4 contains papers that focus on resource allocation and acquisition as it affects crime analysis work. One of the papers underscores the importance of effective resource allocation to successful policing efforts, while another paper reviews resource allocation models and presents the most popular models used within the public safety community. Tables, figures, references

Date Published: June 1, 2001