About the Crime Analysis Unit
The Crime Analysis unit in Lawrence has a wide range of responsibilities, some of which include: summarizing and reporting intelligence to internal and external law enforcement officials; identifying and reporting crime trends and crime patterns; maintaining and reporting official crime data; supporting the work of the Chief’s Office, other divisions, and the City; supporting grant applications and grant reporting; creating reports for ad hoc crime inquires for internal and external audiences.
In addition, the information that Crime Analysis collects and analyzes helps solve individual crimes and supports on-going criminal investigations. For example, the unit has helped investigators identify and apprehend offenders in crimes ranging from car breaks to homicide.
Some basic questions that Crime Analysis answers include:
- Is crime trending up or down?
- What crimes are most problematic for the city?
- Where and when are crimes happening?
- What areas and locations have the greatest crime concentrations?
- How are crimes related to each other? (What are the crime patterns?)
Some methods that help answer these questions include
- Spatial analysis (GIS mapping)
- Qualitative analysis
- Quantitative analysis
In short, the work that Crime Analysis does supports the goals of:
- Identifying, locating, and apprehending offenders
- Reducing crime
- Detecting and solving community problems
- Identifying short-term and long term crime patterns and trends
- Improving quality of life
- Improving public and officer safety
- Measuring effectiveness and optimizing internal operations
- Providing crime information to law enforcement, government, and the public