Law Enforcement

New technology helps state officers, clinicians provide mental health care

Oklahoma law enforcement officers say the iPads offer telehealth services to connect distressed individuals with mental health professionals, reducing the number of hospitalizations and calls to 911 or 988.

Politicians love to cite crime data. It’s often wrong.

Only 71% of U.S. law enforcement agencies submitted 2022 crime data to the FBI.

Cops want guns off the streets. But are buyback programs the way?

Some observers say buyback programs are ineffective at best and can sometimes detract from other violence prevention efforts. 

Using opioid settlement cash for police gear like squad cars and scanners sparks debate

As state and local governments figure out how to spend more than $50 billion from opioid settlement cash, officials must balance how to allocate funds for competing interests such as drug addiction treatment and enhanced police tech.

Police resistance and politics undercut the authority of prosecutors trying to reform the justice system

After major American cities began electing prosecutors who campaigned on the promise of systemic reform, law enforcement unions labeled these DAs as soft on crime while lawmakers made legal and legislative efforts to remove them from office.

Why fentanyl trafficking enforcement may fall short

Several states this year passed laws targeting drug traffickers through increased penalties. But one expert says efforts to curb the fentanyl supply could open the doors for newer, more dangerous substances to arise.

Predictive policing software terrible at predicting crimes

A software company sold a New Jersey police department an algorithm that was right less than 1% of the time.

Traffic tickets can be profitable, and fairness isn’t the bottom line in city courts where judges impose the fines

COMMENTARY | Research shows police officers issue more traffic tickets and judges impose more fines when their city gets the money and when the budget is tight. But if states change the rules about who keeps the money, the incentives for revenue maximization go away.

Cities are embracing teen curfews, though they might not curb crime

Experts worry that curfews disproportionately target young people of color.

What the police raid of a Kansas newspaper says about government and the press

The raid sparked coast-to-coast outrage, but it also raised concerns about the eroding relationship between government officials and the reporters who cover them. Plus, more news to use from around the country in this week's State and Local Roundup.

After George Floyd’s murder, more states require release of police disciplinary records

Lawmakers and advocates say open data on police disciplinary records would boost transparency, accountability and the ability to identify patterns of misconduct in law enforcement agencies.

Why Dayton quit ShotSpotter, a surveillance tool many cities still embrace

Police across the country face increased pressure to drop the controversial technology as researchers and activists question its effectiveness.

Cities have ways to curb gun violence; feds are giving them more money

Lawmakers have recognized community violence intervention programs save lives and taxpayer dollars.

Drones enlisted for real-time monitoring of public events

As Illinois residents enjoy outdoor summer events, a new law allows public safety agencies to use drones to protect the public from potential threats.

Cities urged to fight antisemitism

In a plan released last month, the Biden administration is calling for all hands on deck in countering antisemitism and has laid out steps that states and cities can take to stop discrimination in their communities.

Public safety relies on behind-the-scenes technology

COMMENTARY | Reliable emergency response, citation management and crime analysis technologies give responders the data they need quickly and accurately.

How one city worked to prevent overdoses after large-scale drug trafficking bust 

Manchester, New Hampshire, learned that there are consequences to seizures and arrests: a risk of overdose may rise for dependent users.

Studies show a need for procedural justice in ‘hot spot’ policing

Research supports a style of high-crime policing emphasizing transparency and fairness. Will police follow the evidence?

States Need Better Tech, Training to Keep Repeat Drunk Drivers off the Roads

Lacking adequate resources, states are often unable to provide complete criminal histories to the FBI’s databases, which are critical resources for reducing impaired driving by repeat offenders, according to a new GAO report.

Staffing Challenges Spur Another Look at Four-Day Workweeks

School districts think shorter weeks could attract more teachers, while one Colorado city hopes they can help address chronic staffing shortages at its police department.