Posts Tagged ‘Michigan’

Graffiti crackdown in Detroit

September 20, 2017

This article describes Detroit’s “merciless” crackdown on graffiti, which has resulted in more than 50 arrests and $1.3 million in fines over the last 3 years. Hipster artists had focused on Detroit and all its abandoned buildings as a canvas waiting to be painted, but that collided with the city’s massive effort at blight eradication.

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Rehiring tainted cops in Michigan

July 11, 2017

This article reports numerous cases in Michigan of officers who were fired or resigned for misconduct but later hired by other police departments. Local officials complain that the state should be more strict in decertifying such officers, but union leaders say it’s the individual police chiefs who need to be more diligent. Around the country, 6 states have no revocation authority, and many others can only decertify based on a serious criminal conviction. The national picture is discussed on this 13-minute podcast.

Recruiting challenges widespread

March 19, 2017

This article reviews hiring difficulties facing police agencies around the country. Many are below authorized strength for reasons such as the improving economy, stagnating police wages, the demanding nature of the job, and negative perceptions following high-profile death in custody incidents.

Evidence management & control

March 8, 2017

One topic that doesn’t always get a lot of attention is evidence management, yet every police department comes into possession of drugs, cash, jewelry, and other valuable property. This article notes “weekly news accounts of police departments whose evidence rooms have been jeopardized due to lost or stolen evidence” and discusses the use of modern systems and technology for better control and risk reduction.

Focusing on why

February 22, 2017

Here’s a radio interview with the sheriff of Washtenaw County, Michigan, now in his 3rd term, who has reshaped his agency by focusing on the why, public service and public safety. He believes it is necessary to change the fundamental beliefs of the organization, not just its policies or structure, and to model fairness and equity in how employees are treated as a way of encouraging that kind of behavior when dealing with the public.

Body cams & dash cams in Detroit

February 2, 2017

This article reports on Detroit’s integrated system of body-worn and in-car cameras being implemented city-wide throughout 2017, following a test period in two precincts last year. It also discusses the impact of new video evidence on thousands of cases handled by the county prosecutor annually.

Finding hope in Flint

November 22, 2016

This op-ed by a Flint, Michigan officer describes the desperate conditions in his city and some of the ways that police help hold it together. In his view, a police officer is “the most accessible leader available to the people,” “no other city leader has this level of accountability,” and the city “still stands today because of its Police Department.”

A decade of success in Richmond, CA

November 19, 2016

This article reviews the 10-year term of Chris Magnus as police chief in Richmond, California. A transplant from Michigan and North Dakota, he was able to reduce officer-involved shootings, improve accountability, increase community policing, and generally transform what had been a troubled department. Magnus recently accepted a new position as chief in Tucson, Arizona.

SWAT mission creep

October 13, 2016

While police militarization and the expansion of police paramilitary units were controversial topics before Ferguson, they have gotten even more attention since. This article (with a trailer) describes the award-winning new documentary Do Not Resist. The filmmaker’s father was a SWAT commander in Michigan in the days before the use of such units in search warrant cases became more frequent.

Running men (and women)

May 31, 2016

The latest viral video sensation has police departments doing the “running man” dance. The New Zealand Police were the first to issue the challenge to colleagues around the world; Detroit, LA, Miami, and New York are among those who have responded.