Predicting the Epicenter of Crime: Analytics Tool Cuts Crime Rates
A predictive policing tool in use in the U.S. and abroad helps law enforcement predict crime in the same way that geologists predict earthquakes.
Brantingham said that there are features in the environment that, by their nature, are prone to crime, much like faults are to earthquakes. “A shopping mall is a great example. It’s a standing crop of cars to be stolen or to be broken into. It’s not going anywhere. It’s like a big fault that produces earthquakes at a regular clip.”
Crimes also tend to produce “aftershocks,” as criminals tend to be creatures of habit and return to the same locations where they found previous success. “So you get these after-crimes that occur near in space and near in time to previous crimes.”
PredPol takes that information – what crime is being committed, when and where it happens – and applies mathematical algorithms, and uses it as the basis to forecast where crime will happen in the future. The concept grew out of using hot spots to track where crime is occurring (where you map crime over long intervals to see where it is concentrated to aid in the allocation of resources). But PredPol cuts down the reaction time to changes in crime patterns that might not be readily apparent by simply looking at hot spots marked on a map, thus allowing for a more real-time reaction to changes in the crime landscape.
Phi Beta Iota: Cute and even worthwhile as a stop-gap measure. The problem is that this is one more example of doing the wrong thing righter. As with Civil Affairs, where no amount of talent in the field can overcome a corrupt and even severely retarded White House making very expensive bad policy decisions rooted in what the banks want, no amount of tactical analytics can abate crime waves energized by strategic treason. This is the thumb in the 1950's multi-fractured dike.
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