Monday, August 29, 2016

Chicago police told to become social workers and stop being cops



By Doug Book, Editor

In 2013 the Chicago Police Department began a predictive policing program for the expressed purpose of reducing the amount of gun violence in the city. The principal component of the program was the Strategic Subjects List (SSL), a “…list of individuals who are either prone to be shot, to being a shooter, or having some sort of inclination toward violent crime.”  

The list was created by city employees via the use of an algorithm designed to predict “…who is most likely to be involved in a shooting – either as the shooter or victim – by analyzing data such as gang affiliations, criminal records, past shootings, and previous contact with police.” (1)  

In May of this year, brand new Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson (a surprise pick by Hizhonor Rahm 2 months earlier) stated that fully 80% of the 69 shooting victims over the Memorial Day weekend had been among the 1,400 gang members whose names appeared on the SSL.  

Fully 80%! Hallelujah! A well designed, nicely reasoned-out application of facts will apparently provide Chicago police a leg up in solving crimes, arresting suspects and perhaps, keeping the streets of Chicago a little safer. For although the SSL provided only the names of “victims” over the Memorial Day weekend, it’s a safe bet that many-if not most-had been shot by fellow members of rival gangs known to Chicago street cops.

And how many crimes has the list helped solve? How many lives have been saved thanks to proactive policing based on names found on the SSL? Well, none! It seems the SSL was never meant to provide suspects or assist police in protecting the Windy City’s law abiding from its criminal element. Rather, “the hope was that the list would allow police to provide social services to people in danger…”  

That’s right. “The list was designed to let Chicago police engage with at-risk (and potentially dangerous) citizens, but also to provide social services, such as access to counseling…” A $2 million grant from The National Institute of Justice allowed the City of Chicago to create an algorithm useful in prognosticating the identity of gang members in need of social services and counseling.

In fact, use of the list in the performance of police work was considered a BAD thing! In a 3 year study, the Rand Corporation criticized Chicago Police because the Department  “…wasn’t using the list as a way to provide social services; instead, CPD was using it as a way to target people for arrest.”  

"The individuals on the SSL were considered to be ‘persons of interest’ to the CPD," meaning that “the list essentially served as a way to find suspects after the fact.” 

So Chicago police made use of the SSL by rounding up suspects and solving crimes rather than providing social services? The Bastards!

Such are the priorities of a city run for decades by members of the Democrat Party.


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