Magazine article Security Management

Community Policing Gets a Makeover

Magazine article Security Management

Community Policing Gets a Makeover

Article excerpt

LONG BEACH, California, is sometimes considered the largest suburb in the United States, because of its proximity to Los Angeles. In reality, it is a city of half a million residents, with many of the problems of an urban area. The city's police department has enhanced its community-oriented public safety (COPS) program to address typical urban problems including drugs, graffiti, gangs, shootings, and prostitution, with promising results. The program may offer valuable lessons for other communities.

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Though Long Beach police have had a COPS program for years, it consisted of only a few officers from each patrol division, who liaised with neighborhood organizations and met with residents. The new philosophy has been for the police department to focus on "institutionalizing [COPS] practices at all levels of the organization, as well as the city of Long Beach and the city prosecutor's office," according to a recent article in the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin. …

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