The investigative plan is aimed to decrease the level of robbery by enforcement of criminal policies carried out by local government by combining both the prevention and conservative programs and deterrence programs. The main objective is to create a plan that will address the frequency of daytime robbery attacks in the area for failure to strictly implement the law and reinforce the defined goals of the community.
As an initial step, the technical methods that will be included in the investigative plan will be composed of the planning, programming and budgeting systems (PPBS) and the cost benefit analysis to assess the efficiency of the program.
There is a need to identify the various forms of robbery that can be committed by offenders during daytime such as the individual of street robbery, armed robbery, bank robbery and home invasion robbery. It bears stressing the crime of robbery falls under the category of violent crimes. On the other hand, a simple robbery can be illustrated as the offense of taking cash, personal property, or any article of value from the victim through the use of force, threat and inflicting fear on the victim (Miller and Jentz, 2011). A bank robbery is accomplished by armed men using force and intimidation which can be aggravated by bringing of deadly firearms to carry out the crime. Hence, the local government will have to strictly enforce preventive measures to eradicate the robbery incidents within the community.
The first step is to create criminal policies. Houston, Bridgmon and Parsons (2008) stated that criminal policy refers to a combination of prevention and conservative deterrence programs. Most of the policy-making process in criminal justice adheres to the criminological theory. To understand the theory, there is a process that has to be followed such as the technical methods that have to be observed such as planning, programming and budgeting systems (PPBS) and the cost benefit analysis (Houston et al., 2008, p. 58). It is imperative that these processes will have to be followed in order to determine if the criminal policy has reached the intended public, client or constituent.
The second step is to assess if the criminal policy will be able to hit the targeted issue. Evaluation of the policy is best achieved if analysis and recommendation are conducted to measure the efficiency of the policy. In addition, there must be comparison advantages and disadvantages of the criminal policy on the objective of eliminating the crime of robbery within the community.
The third step is to evaluate the criminal policy on robbery and assess the political and scientific aspects of the problem. The goal of policy evaluation is to make an analysis on its effect in terms of economic, social and cultural aspects on the crime. Houston et al., (2008, p.63) argued that impact analysis will enable the consultant define the elements of the subject matter of the investigation; ensure that the goals and objectives of the policy will address the problem; the framework will be able to assess the impact of the policy on the targeted objective and there must be report that will contain the findings.
The fourth step is to maintain police visibility within the community to decrease the incidence of robbery and other violent crimes. These police measure should consider the following points: the number of police officer assigned in the area, random police patrols, directed patrols, proactive arrests, community-oriented policing and problem-oriented policing (Sherman, 2002). Studies revealed that the more police officers deployed in a particular city lower the chances of robbery and other crimes. The quick response of the police to 911 calls require a shorter travel time for the police to respond to the crime scene investigation. Random patrols strengthens police visibility in the community and is considered an efficient crime deterrent. The visibility of patrol patrols must be designated in the “hot spots” and “hot times” where criminal activities commonly occur (Sherman, 2011). At the same time, the more reactive arrests performed by the police, will decrease the incidents of robbery in the community. In addition, proactive arrests to prevent violent crimes including robbery will lessen the level of serious violent crime (Sherman, 2011). Effective policing works hand in hand with community policing because that will need the participation of the citizens fight the crime of robbery. On addition, problem-oriented policing will assist the police force to identify the proximate causes and patterns to commit the crime of robbery (Sherman, 2011).
The fifth step is to reduce the risk of robbery by reducing the risk of the crime to occur in the community by encouraging the banks and private businesses to protect their establishments to be able to minimize the probability of violence to occur. This can be done by combining physical and procedural control measures that shall include the design or plan of the establishment or store, the installation of security devices and educating and training of employees in the event robbery occurs. The efficiency of the control measures will depend on the type of business establishment, its location and individual business practices.
The sixth step is to reinforce the physical controls by analyzing the store design and security devices, as well as the sightlines inside and outside of the business establishments. This can be achieved by using low shelving or mirrors, and to positioning the sales counter near the windows to enable the employees to have a clear view of the outside of the store and in for the public to see what is happening inside the business establishment. Good lighting and installation of security cameras, the use of door alarms, panic alarms or personal alarms will be able to carry out the objective of lowering the risk of robbery in the business establishment.
The seventh step is networking. Networking means combining joint efforts with other businesses which are located within the immediate area to enable the businesses to combine their knowledge and resources, information and training on best practices to reduce the risk of robbery in the establishments. Networking will provide help and support among the members of the neighborhood and ensure the safety of the community. Some of the joint efforts within the neighborhood include enhanced outdoor lighting, increasing the motion detectors, the visibility of security staff and the education and training of employees against violence prevention. The neighboring business can set up informal or advertised watch systems that will monitor the activities of business establishments during business hours of the day.
The eighth step is to recommend to local community that one of the ways to combat robbery is through “panopticism”, which can be accomplished by gathering, surveillance and registration of citizens. Panopticism is a description of surveillance in a contemporary society through the installation of CCTV cameras in critical areas. Based on the study of Maras (2012), the efficacy of these measures in combating incidents of crime has been proven effective. In fact, intelligence agencies and law enforcement officials keep the records of identities of criminals, terrorists, drug lords, gang members and organized crime groups, by giving out information about these dangerous individuals to the public. The installation of CCTV surveillance cameras in public places such as commercial establishments and inside office buildings will safeguard the general public from potential risks such as robbery and other violent crimes. Modern devices using technology-generated CCTV cameras serve as watchdogs to monitor and stop the perpetrators of crimes in pursuing their evil motives.
The ninth step is another technology that is being used is the “Radio Frequency Identification” or RFID which make it possible for the local law enforcement agencies to make use of facial recognition technology to track down criminals. The facial recognition software targets persons whose information are stored in the database has identified any potential connection with other criminals. The use of this software is being used to avoid other violent incidents such as robbery and other violent crimes. This is will aid in the analysis the pattern of robbery activity and the activities of future perpetrators of the crime. Therefore, it can be concluded that technology plays a significant role in fighting robbery and other violent crimes.
The last step is to check references of prospective employees who might be associated with the crime. The business establishments and the police investigating team must perform a background check of previous employers and the criminal history of new employees. It is imperative to maintain a record or data base on all employees together with their pictures. The previous employees are aware of the store procedure and the place where money is stored. There is a tendency that past employees share this information with other people who can use it to perpetrate robbery in the business establishment. Keeping a file of employees’ pictures of who can turn-out to become the potential suspects, will help the police hunt down the criminals rather than verbal descriptions of the suspects.
Dempsey, J.S. and Forst, L.S. (2011). Introduction to Policing. New York: Cengage.
Goodman, J. D. (2013). “Robbed at Gunpoint, Some Bronx Victims Resist”. Web. New York Times.com. Retrieved on July 4, 2013, from, http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/29/nyregion/robbed-at-gunpoint-some-bronx-victims-resist.html?pagewanted=all.
Houston, J. G., Bridgmon, P. B. & Parsons, W.W. (1999). Criminal Justice and the Policy Process, 2nd ed. New York: University Press of America.
Maras, M. H. (2012). Counterterrorism. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett.
Miller, R.L. and Jentz, G.A. (2007). Business Law Today: The Essentials.California: Cengage.
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Sherman, L., 2002. Evidence-Based Crime Prevention. New York: Taylor and Francis.