Friday, November 30, 2012

Miss the muggers?

In New York City, they are missing.  So are the shooters and stabbers.  Makes one wonder what Lenny Briscoe would make of all this niceness;

For more than 36 hours in New York City, no-one was shot, stabbed, or otherwise killed. The crime freeze began after 22:25 on Sunday, when a man was shot in the head, and continued until another man was shot at 11:20 on Tuesday.
Though the break in violent crime marked the first time in recent memory such an event had occurred, the figure doesn't surprise criminologists.
"I'm surprised it's just the first day this has happened," says Alfred Blumstein, a professor of public policy at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Considering, says Blumstein, that there were only 472 homicides in New York last year, with this year on track for even fewer, the odds of a violent-crime free day are favourable.
So, whassup with that?  Smarter cops, apparently;
Thanks in part to Comstat, a sophisticated statistics tool, New York police were better able to identify crime patterns and violent "hotspots" in the 1990s.
From there, top brass in the police force were able to meet together to develop a more consistent battle plan against the city's crime.
"It was much more of an attempt at being more sophisticated at policing than had typically been the case," says Blumstein.
These strategies included increased police presence, busting of outdoor drug peddling, and more controversial methods like "stop-and-frisk" where young men in high-crime areas are stopped and patted down for illegal weapons and drugs. 

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