Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXXI, No. 628 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY January 2005

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
Number-crunching: Problems with crime stats in St. Louis and New Orleans. Page 1.
Throwing in the towel: FBI is about to give up on a computer upgrade effort. Page 1.
Case study in cooperation: PERF looks at Beltway Sniper case. Page 1.
Disarming development: In protest, some London bobbies refuse to carry guns. Page 4.
Short Takes: Easy-to-digest news capsules. Page 4.
Change of focus: Coalition of black groups wants more emphasis on prevention, not prison. Page 5.
Mass. appeal: Instant background checks win favor with gun buyers & sellers. Page 5.
No panacea: Maryland gun database has yet to yield results. Page 5.
People & Places: West Monroe doctrine; policing from scratch; thanks for the memory; now you see them, now you don’t. Page 6.
The LEN interview: Frederick, Md., Police Chief Kim Dine. Pages 7-9.
Forum: Kerik’s cons, and the heat of the spotlight. Page 10.

 People & Places

W. Monroe doctrine

     The challenge that Christopher Elg has faced over the past year as chief of West Monroe, La., is the type that all police executives, should crave: How to make a great department even better.

     Elg is the first new chief West Monroe has had in 25 years. Its former leader, Larry LaBorde, left in 2003 to head the campus police force at the University of Louisiana in Shreveport. But he left to his successor an agency that runs like a watch....

Policing from scratch

     Is there a distinction between a “police” officer and a “law enforcement” officer? Yes, according to Lone Tree, Colo., Chief Stephen Hasler, who says that a police officer is someone who solves problems, while a law enforcement officer is someone who writes tickets. And under his leadership, the city’s police department will be staffed by the former rather than the latter.

     Lone Tree is the first jurisdiction in Colorado in 21 years to swear in a new force. When it was incorporated in 1995, the affluent Denver suburb entered into a $2 million-a-year contract with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department for police services. But given Lone Tree’s growth, which is expected to rise from 8,000 residents to 50,000 over the next 20 years, city officials believed it made more sense to build a department from scratch....

Oh boy, oh Boise

     When Boise, Idaho’s acting police chief, Jim Tibbs, retired on Dec. 31, he took 34 years of professional know-how with him.

     A lieutenant, Tibbs stepped in last February after former chief Don Pierce was asked to resign by Mayor Dave Bieter. But when Tibbs applied for the permanent appointment last summer, he was not one of the two finalists. ...

Thanks for the memory

     A researcher whose work on false memories has so riled abuse victims and their advocates that it has earned her death threats was honored in November as the winner of the 2005 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award for Psychology.

     Elizabeth Loftus, a professor of criminology and psychology at the University of California-Irvine, is the most controversial figure to win the $200,000 prize since former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev won in 1994, said Rich Lewine, a Louisville professor and chairman of the award....

Now you see them...

     The abrupt firing in January of more than two dozen Clayton County, Ga., Sheriff’s Department employees was done for security reasons, said newly-elected Sheriff Victor Hill, who announced the dismissals on his first day in office.

     Four years ago, he said, DeKalb County sheriff-elect Derwin Brown sent out letters to 25 or so people letting them know they would not be reappointed. Just days before taking office, Brown was murdered in his driveway, in a hit ordered by the man he had unseated, former sheriff Sidney Dorsey....