ILJ’s demonstrated law enforcement expertise spans a wide range of subject areas, including management and operations, community policing, community mobilization, homeland security, and partnerships with private security. ILJ has managed hundreds of law enforcement management studies, strategic plans, community policing implementations, and research projects. ILJ has always been at the forefront of the response to emerging issues in policing, working with federal agencies and local police departments alike.

Past Projects

Combat Deployment and the Returning Police Officer

For the U. S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Policing Services (COPS Office), ILJ conducted an exploratory study of law enforcement efforts to assist police officers who have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. The study included an extensive literature review; interviews with approximately 30 police agencies that provide various types of services to returning police officers; and consultations with police psychologists and other experts. The resulting publication, Combat Deployment and the Returning Police Officer, includes recommendations for future research, and for what police agencies can do now to better assist officers returning from combat zones and their families.

Identifying and Measuring the Effects of Information Technologies on Law Enforcement Agencies

For the Office of the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), ILJ conducted two surveys of 290 COPS MORE grantees about their implementation of various information technologies obtained with grant funds, including: the reason for choosing those technologies; implementation and training approaches; changes in policies and procedures; and impacts of technology on the organization. ILJ’s Guidebook on Identifying and Measuring Impacts of Information Technologies, based largely on information from the surveys, was published by COPS, and provides detailed information on information technologies such as automated field reporting systems; computer aided dispatch; and systems for records management, arrest and booking, and automated fingerprint identification.

Training Evaluation Model: Evaluating and Improving Criminal Justice Training

This project for the National Institute of Justice produced a training evaluation model that can guide evaluations of a wide range of criminal justice training activities. The project’s goal was to help U. S. Department of Justice agencies achieve more consistency and control over the training they funded. The first major task was to formulate a flexible evaluation model for outcome evaluations of criminal justice training programs. Next, the training evaluation model was tested by applying it to four federally funded training projects. The model provides a consistent way to assess whether to fund a training project or not, offers guidance for making improvements in training development, and can help increase the capacity of local and state criminal justice programs to conduct their own training evaluations.

Cross-Site Evaluation of Locally Initiated Research Collaborations

Under sponsorship of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), 25 locally initiated partnerships between police departments and research institutions worked together to assess problem identification methods, data collection and analysis, research design, and use of results. ILJ received an award from NIJ to do a cross-site study, summarizing elements such as problems arising in the partnerships, acceptance of the research teams into the police organizations, on-site time invested by researchers, turnover of key personnel, and other factors affecting successful partnership work. ILJ conducted cluster conferences and electronic (listserv) conferencing on specific police topics connected with the partnership research, such as domestic violence reduction, drug prevention, and crime mapping.

National Evaluation of the COPS Methamphetamine Initiative

ILJ conducted a cross-site evaluation of the COPS FY 98 Methamphetamine Initiative, which supported projects in Salt Lake County, Phoenix, Dallas, Oklahoma City, and Little Rock. The aim of the evaluation was to gauge the successfulness of the sites’ efforts to combat methamphetamine problems in their respective communities. Project tasks included conducting interviews with key representatives of agencies participating in the Methamphetamine Initiative; surveying those individuals with respect to the level of partnership and interaction among agencies; and conducting interviews with persons involved with methamphetamine (drug court program participants, arrestees, people in treatment whose primary drug of abuse is methamphetamine).

National Assessment of Less Than Lethal Weapons

This study for the National Institute of Justice described current law enforcement and correctional agency practices in the use of less than lethal (LTL) weapons, assessed agency policies and procedures developed to control their deployment, and conducted a comparative analysis of different types of weapons presently used.

A national survey collected information about LTL weapons and their frequency of use, use situations, effectiveness and efficiency, positive and negative attributes, training, public acceptance, policies and procedures, and plans for future purchases. After an examination of many agencies' policies and procedures, an extensive legal analysis, a comprehensive review of the literature, and in-depth case studies at a number of sites, a comprehensive final report including recommendations for a continuing research agenda of direct practical utility to criminal justice professionals was prepared. The legal analyses were published in April 1995 in the Creighton Law Review. ILJ continues to be involved in the assessment of LTL technologies and the public acceptance of these tools.

Data Collection on Police Use of Force

Dr. Tom McEwen prepared the report, National Data Collection on Police Use of Force, for the Bureau of Justice Statistics and the National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice. Police may be called on to use force when making an arrest, breaking up an altercation, or performing myriad other routine activities. The basic problem in this area has been a lack of routine, national systems for collecting data on use of force, both in the normal course of duty in incidents of excessive force. This report describes federal approaches and a national workshop in which 40 experts considered appropriate data collection involving the public, the police, and the courts.

National Study of Police Vehicle Pursuit Policies

For the National Institute of Justice, ILJ studied the effectiveness of stringent police vehicle pursuit policies in reducing accidents associated with pursuits. The study included before and after comparisons of accident data in four major police agencies: Nassau County, New York; Phoenix, Arizona; Mesa, Arizona; and St. Petersburg, Florida. These agencies had recently implemented stringent policies on vehicle pursuits. The study also included legal research on civil liability related to police vehicle accidents attributed to pursuit situations.

National Assessment of Investigations of Computer Crimes by Local Police Departments and Prosecutors

ILJ developed a report for the National Institute of Justice on the experiences of local police departments and prosecutors' offices who selected and trained full-time personnel to investigate and prosecute computer crimes. These crimes include unauthorized access to business and government computers via telephone lines (hacking), destruction of data and programs in a system ("Trojan horse"), modification of proprietary software for sale (software piracy), obtaining long-distance account numbers to avoid telephone charges, and altering data in a system in conjunction with other illegal acts (such as fraud and embezzlement schemes). The report also discussed recent changes in federal and state statutes governing computer crimes. Specific cases were documented to illustrate the various techniques and problems in investigating computer crimes.

Drug Market Analysis: An Enforcement Model

The Drug Market Analysis program was a major initiative by the National Institute of Justice to help law enforcement agencies develop and implement mapping information systems to assist in street-level enforcement efforts against illegal drugs, guns, and other crime. The five police departments participating in the program (San Diego, California; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Hartford, Connecticut; Jersey City, New Jersey; and Kansas City, Missouri) developed mapping information systems and employed these systems to improve enforcement tactics.

ILJ produced several publications discussing the experiences of the sites with their mapping systems for illegal drug activity. Publications included both technical information (hardware and software considerations) and application information, such as use with community oriented policing, identification of drug markets, and presentations to neighborhood organizations.

Comprehensive Drug-Impacted Small Jurisdictions Assessment

This project for the Bureau of Justice Assistance involved a national assessment of the problems of drug use and abuse in smaller cities and counties, those with a population of 50,000 or less, across the United States. ILJ provided technical assistance to five demonstration sites: Bowling Green, Kentucky; Granite City, Illinois; Hastings, Nebraska; Fort Myers, Florida; and Pittsfield, Massachusetts. The ILJ project involved development of a model approach for small and rural jurisdictions and an operations manual encompassing strategies and steps for jurisdictions in the creation and implementation of a comprehensive anti-drug program. In addition, an assessment report of existing multifaceted anti-drug programs in smaller jurisdictions was produced. This report was based on a telephone survey of small jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Field Test to Improve Cooperation Between Police and Prosecutors

This test for the National Institute of Justice hypothesized that police can increase felony convictions by improving the quality and availability of evidence transferred to the prosecutor. The test sites were Garden Grove/Orange County, California; Indianapolis/Marion County, Indiana; and Newport News, Virginia. Project tasks included examining the value of police pre-screening felony arrests, developing arrest conviction standards, training police in the new standards and in new ways of collecting and presenting evidence, and using arrest conviction as a measure of police performance.

Evaluation of Community Crime/Problem Resolution Through Police Directed Patrol

In this study for the National Institute of Justice, ILJ and the Police Executive Research Forum evaluated the use of problem-oriented policing and directed patrol techniques in the Baltimore County, Maryland, Police Department. Problem solving was implemented in one of the department's three patrol areas and involved 350 officers. Major project objectives included:

  • Freeing up patrol officer time by expanding the department's alternatives for handling calls for service
  • Expanding crime analysis functions to identify community and business problems
  • Training supervisors and patrol officers in problem identification, analysis, response, and assessment

Offender Processing Costs

Under subcontract with the Jefferson Institute, ILJ staff were involved in a study of the cost of processing offenders through the criminal justice system. The study examined the cost of processing offenders to various exit points of the criminal justice system (e.g., failure to prosecute, diversion, guilty plea, trial, probation, incarceration, parole). In the course of the study at four sites, ILJ examined operations, procedures, and detailed costs of courts of limited jurisdiction, courts of general jurisdiction, jails, probation offices, and state correctional systems. The study produced average costs for processing offenders to terminal points in the criminal justice system.

Drug Trafficking in the Workplace

Under a national initiative funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, ILJ and Hallcrest Systems, Inc., developed protocols to help the private sector work with federal, state, and local law enforcement to investigate and prosecute workplace drug crimes. The main product was a set of guidelines approved by experts in the investigation and prosecution of workplace drug crimes. The protocols represented the first nationwide joint effort between the public and private sectors to address the issue of drug trafficking in the workplace. The protocols were distributed to law enforcement agencies; prosecutors; corporate security and human resource managers; and business, security, and criminal justice associations. Project products also included a literature review, legal analysis, and case studies.

Evaluation of Traffic Law Sanctions

For the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the Department of Transportation, ILJ conducted a two-year study of the impact of traffic law sanctions (fines, jail, and license suspension and revocation) on the driving habits of motorists. Extensive data collection included analyzing driving records, interviewing drivers, and observing driving offenses and police enforcement in North Carolina, Colorado, and Maryland. The final report explored the application of deterrence theory to police traffic programs.

Evaluation of the Selective Traffic Enforcement Program

This was a comprehensive evaluation for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the Department of Transportation. The study was part of a two-year effort to reduce moving traffic violations and traffic accidents using selective traffic enforcement tactics. Staff observed site activities, interviewed police personnel, and analyzed data on traffic activity and accidents in police agencies in Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Sacramento, California; and Albuquerque, New Mexico. The final report demonstrated the benefits and problems associated with traffic targeting tactics, personnel allocation, and traffic enforcement equipment.

Evaluation of the Differential Police Response Field Test

ILJ performed a comprehensive evaluation of the National Institute of Justice's two-year field test of Differential Police Response (DPR) in Toledo, Ohio; Greensboro, North Carolina; and Garden Grove, California. These departments developed new ways to classify and screen calls for service and provide alternative means of responding to these calls. All three departments produced sizable increases in patrol time available for crime prevention, directed patrol, and other functions. The alternative call-handling methods (scheduling appointments, taking telephone reports, etc.) proved less costly than the traditional response of sending mobile units to all calls. The vast majority of the 11,000 citizens surveyed by phone reported they were very satisfied with the alternative services.

ILJ also evaluated the Garden Grove Police Department's Priority Patrol Field Test for the National Institute of Justice. Results showed that Garden Grove freed up patrol time in uninterrupted blocks; supervisors gained more control over field officers; and officers on priority patrol were more productive than those on routine patrol.

Evaluation of the Managing Patrol Operations Field Test

This project involved performing an in-depth evaluation for the National Institute of Justice on the field test of the Managing Patrol Operations program in police departments of Charlotte, North Carolina; Albuquerque, New Mexico; and Sacramento, California. The evaluation included testing the utility of the Patrol Car Allocations Model (PCAM) and the Hypercube Model for police patrol resource allocation; testing microcomputer models for officer scheduling; evaluating the planning and implementation of directed patrol programs; and evaluating efforts to implement more efficient and effective citizen call prioritization schemes and telephone report units.

Evaluation of Concentrated Crime Reduction Programs

For the Maryland Governor's Commission on Law Enforcement, ILJ conducted an extensive evaluation of the impact of new police tactical programs on specific targeted crimes. Most of these programs were aimed at reducing armed robberies and burglaries by deploying stake-out and directed patrol teams. Projects were evaluated over a two-year period in five cities and counties in Maryland.

Un-Served Arrest Warrants

ILJ conducted this exploratory study for the National Institute of Justice to examine whether increased efforts to serve warrants or new warrant service strategies might reduce incidents of violent crime. The project included analyses of warrant service and arrest data from Montgomery County, Maryland, and Hennepin County, Minnesota, as well as consultations with personnel who are responsible for warrant service in these and other jurisdictions. The final report presents the data analysis results, reviews warrant service methods that are commonly employed, and recommends a research methodology for future studies in this area.

Sample Publications and Products

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