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New Perspectives in Policing: One Week in Heron City - A Case Study (Set)

NCJ Number
Date Published
September 2009
51 pages
One Week in Heron City follows Chief Laura Harrison's through her first week on the job in this fictional city of 400,000. We invite you to eavesdrop and see how law enforcement agencies might eliminate pre-established mentalities and see problems in a new light. Chief Harrison enters a city: Where the sense of safety has been shattered by the brutal, unsolved murder of a young mother who had repeatedly told police she was being followed. Experiencing a rash of high-end car thefts that few people are concerned about because of excellent insurance payouts. Whose public health department is preparing for a possible flu pandemic and wants to know what services the police can offer. Chief Harrison discovers that progress is slow made despite all the department's problemsolving efforts Compstat, intelligence-led and evidence-based policing, community policing. When Nigel Jewett, a junior IT analyst with a background in marine biology, approaches Chief Harrison and offers his fresh perspective on data analysis, she realizes that breaking out of the boundaries of standard policing practices might be the key to solving the city's problems. One Week in Heron City is presented in three parts: Case A The mayor briefs Chief Harrison on critical problems. She meets with the heads of her Compstat and community and intelligence-led policing units as well as the head of the IT division. She also meets a young IT analyst, Nigel Jewett, who has some interesting proposals for analyzing data collected by the department. Case B In the second half of her first week, Chief Harrison has a contentious meeting with the head of evidence-based policing and talks in detail with Nigel about his take on how to approach problems. Separate Teaching Notes, designed to provoke conversation on several major issues faced by Chief Harrison, are available from Harvard University (see Teaching Notes at http://www.nij.gov/pubs-sum/one-week-in-heron-city.htm to request copies). This publication is a product of the second "Executive Session on Policing and Public Safety," a collaboration of NIJ and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

Date Published: September 1, 2009