CPD expands predictive policing technology, deploys 86 new officers

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A man was arrested Jan. 11 after crashing a stolen vehicle in Austin.

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Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson announced Sunday that the department added predictive policing technology to the Near West Side District and deployed more than 80 new officers across the city.

The 12th District’s newly-installed station-based Decision Support Center is part of CPD’s push to double the number of districts utilizing predictive strategies this year, according to a statement issued by the mayor’s office. Crime cameras will also be installed in the district next month “to support police in preventing, combating and responding to violent crime.”

The addition of the predictive technology and analytical tools builds on the department’s push toward targeted, data-driven enforcement that looks to “build a culture of accountability among violent offenders,” according to the statement.

In addition, officials announced that cellphones equipped with crime analysis tools would be give to every beat officer who responds to a service call in the 12th District. The devices will give officers access to intelligence that will help them determine deployment strategies based on crime data, according to the statement.

“When we set off on our strategy over a year ago to hire more officers and integrate technology at the district level, it was with the intention to make CPD better and to make Chicago safer,” Johnson said in the statement. “I am proud to say that as a result, we have seen twelve straight months in a row of sustained gun violence reductions.”

Last year, CPD implemented similar strategies in six police districts on the South and West sides that have been plagued by gun violence. In January, the technology was expanded to the Grand Crossing, South Chicago and Calumet districts.

Shootings are down by nearly 34 percent this year compared to the same period last year in the districts that are currently using the tools, the statement said. Those numbers outpace the overall 28 percent reduction of citywide shootings so far this year.

“Despite the progress we have made, which could not have been done without the brave work of our officers, our mission remains to be completed,” Johnson added.  “We will continue to make investments so that officers can do their jobs effectively in true partnership with the communities we serve.”

A total of 86 new officers were also recently deployed to their district assignments, adding to the 720 officers already added to the police force since the beginning of the latest hiring plan, according to the statement from the mayor’s office. The new officers will be deployed in the Central, Wentworth, Near West, Shakespeare, Near North and Town Hall police districts.

“These men and women will do more than patrol their community, they will be a part of the community,” Emanuel said in the statement. “We are investing in new officers and equipping them with tools and technology to support what they are already doing. This will help officers make smarter deployment decisions and support more effective investigations, while strengthening proactive, professional policing.”

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