Category Archives: Research Work

Policing | What Can We Learn from Wal-Mart and Amazon?

English: A Crystal Ball I created in 3D. Suppo...

 Predictive Policing: What Can We Learn from Wal-Mart and Amazon about Fighting Crime in a Recession?

In the current economic climate, police departments are being asked to do more with less. In some localities, significant budget reductions are requiring police managers and command staff to consider reductions in the retention of sworn personnel.

Personnel costs represent the single largest budget line item in most public safety organizations. The ability to use this resource more efficiently has become absolutely essential to police managers under current budgetary restrictions.

Now, new tools designed to increase the effective use of police resources could make every agency more efficient, regardless of the availability of resources. As these new budgetary restraints and limitations are faced, the question to ask with more urgency is “Why just count crime when you can anticipate, prevent, and respond more effectively?”

Predictive policing allows command staff and police managers to leverage advanced analytics in support of meaningful, information-based tactics, strategy, and policy decisions in the applied public safety environment. As the law enforcement community increasingly…

To read more – Police Chief Magazine – View Article.


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Police Chief Scott Silverii: Sheepdogs in the Fringe

Chief Scott Silverii, PhD

Editor’s NOTE: Originally posted at The Graveyard Shift as a contributing guest of Lee Lofland.

Police Chief Scott Silverii: Sheepdogs in the Fringe

I was recently asked to speak at a book reading for the local library to discuss my latest work on cop culture, “A Darker Shade of Blue; From Public Servant to Professional Deviant.”

Unsure of what was expected, I looked for key sections or excerpts that might appeal to the civilian public. One of the selections discussed why cops fail to fit-in with the general civilian population.

I described the enticement of a fringe lifestyle, and the intoxicating draw of society’s margins. Their blank stares quickened my heartbeat and signaled that this first attempt by our community library to feature local authors was going south quickly.

Retooling the chronology of the presentation, I did as any experienced public speaker and supervisor of public servants would do. I lifted the microphone just under my mouth, lowered my voice and howled, “I’m a Sheepdog!”

Since that too did not go well, I launched into an explanation of the significance for a common cop term, “Don’t be sheep.” I’d like to share the same with you, sans the howling.

The police tradition is steeped in symbolism and imagery helping solidify officer ideology and public comprehension. Cops use the term “Sheepdog” to describe their position and role in society. It goes something like this;


The majority of our population is good, honest people who would never intentionally harm another without provocation. They usually flock together and travel in groups to create unique cliques, cultures and societies. Sheep are not genetically predisposed for violence, but inherently desire social clustering.

Sheep desire belonging that involves homogeneity, or a sense of similarity. People tend to draw to those they share things in common. Band members are a unique clique in high school, distance runners are a special culture of athletes, and the free society we enjoy in America allows us to participate in activities such as music and athletics.

Humanity has survived thanks to the innate desire of individuals for banding together. Clustering creates cultures contributing to the proliferation of our species. Though early humans divided as some preferred hunting, while others chose the path of gathering, it was the bond of similarity allowing both cliques to succeed.

People are good, and enjoy the pleasant company of respectfully interacting with others.


The wolves in our society represent the psychopathic victimizers, openly preying upon the peace-seeking sheep. They hunt, stalk and attack because it is their delight and pre-disposition to deliver chaos despite the effect on the larger community of sheep.

Operating in either small packs or as singularly motivated individuals, the wolf has no concern for the well-being or life’s enjoyment shared by others. They do not survive by co-existing within the flock, nor do they respect the social mores, traditions, or values of the flock.

They exist to unsettle, frighten, injure, and kill the sheep. The sheep is defenseless against the direct motivated attack of the wolf. Yet the sheep never lose their ability to combine a collective presence for the overarching benefit of the whole. Even in times of senseless violence.


The sheepdog is a social creature. They are also naturally inclined towards violent attack if provoked. The sheepdog loyally protects the herd, but does not live amongst them. There maintains a separation between the herd and the dog. Sheep are easily disconcerted by the sheepdog’s presence, yet they understand the dog’s presence will not cause harm.

Remaining in the fringe, the sheepdog is poised to respond to the threat or attack by the wolf. When the lone or pack wolves arrive, the sheep cling to each other with an assurance the sheepdog will arrive to save them.

Appearing from the gap, the sheepdog, a usually docile character, becomes aggressive and committed to the safety of the flock. The sheepdog will fight, injure, kill and even sacrifice its own life for the safety of the flock. Even to save just one sheep.

Thwarting the violent assault from a motivated offender, the sheepdog remains unwelcomed and removes itself from the society of the herd. Though selflessly interjected into the fray of violence, there is no expectation of reward, acceptance or inclusion.

Personal sacrifice, hunting the hunters, and maintaining social harmony are the sheepdog’s satisfiers. Exclusion, solitude and misunderstanding are the sheepdog’s sacrifices. The fringe is where the sheepdog remains without even a howl; for that is their duty.

Don’t Be Sheep

If you hear, say or use the term, “Don’t be sheep,” then you know it does not refer to wearing a wool sweater. This means the warrior mindset requires an objective separation from the collective harmony of society to see the coming threats. This means you must always be prepared to fight the wolf no matter how, when or where it appears. This means even after you’ve laid the wolf or yourself down in the line of duty, the fringe is where you’ll return.

Had my presentation occurred prior to the Boston Marathon bombing, I believe the audience would have remained perplexed. That night, that event and that explanation prompted some to applaud, while the others; you guessed it. Howled!!


Filed under Personal Perspective, Research Work

Chicago is Adopting The “Broken Windows” Strategy | Law Enforcement Today

Chicago Police Department

Chicago is Adopting The “Broken Windows” Strategy

Editor’s NOTE: In a city with a high propensity for violent crime, do you think fixing windows and erasing graffiti is the solution? Is The broken windows theory a crime fighting strategy or a quality of life improvement plan? Either way, something’s got to give.

May 5, 2013 in Crime, Crime Prevention, Featured, Posts by Jean Reynolds

In January, Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy announced that 200 police officers were going to be reassigned to patrol work. Two weeks later, McCarthy had more news for Chicago residents:

Focusing on the little things

He is proposing an ordinance to authorize arrests for unpaid tickets for public urination, public consumption of alcohol, and gambling—“the three top complaints,” he said, from Chicago residents.

“Fixing the little things prevents the bigger things,” said McCarthy, a longtime advocate of the “broken windows” approach to fighting crime. “Broken windows” is the brainchild of social scientists James Q. Wilson and George L. Kelling.

The theory behind it

They claimed that unrepaired windows, litter, and other signs of neighborhood decay constitute an announcement that a neighborhood has stopped taking responsibility for the quality of life in its public spaces. The next step is for responsible citizens to start moving out—and for lawbreakers to move in.

To learn more about it

To Read More about Chicago’s paradigm policing shift;  Chicago is Adopting The “Broken Windows” Strategy | Law Enforcement Today.

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Chief Scott Silverii, Ph.D. Named Executive Fellow | Police Foundation

Chief Scott Silverii, PhD

Chief Scott Silverii, Ph.D.

Police Foundation President Jim Bueermann approved the appointment for City of Thibodaux Chief of Police, Dr. Scott Silverii as an Executive Fellow and member of its Research Advisory Committee.


The Police Foundation also sponsors the Cambridge Police Executive Program

Executive Fellowship Program

Executive Fellows at the Police Foundation are current or retired executive-level members of criminal justice organizations whose knowledge, experience and skills help advance the Foundation’s mission. They serve as members of the President’s Practitioner Advisory Board to help ensure the Foundation is grounded in a comprehensive understanding the practical needs of law enforcement organizations.

In addition, executive fellows serve as the Foundation’s regional representatives in national and international settings.  Executive Fellows work on specific projects, represent the Foundation in meetings and conferences, and develop substantive thought pieces about the pressing issues facing policing. They serve for terms determined by the Foundation’s president.

via Executive Fellowship Program | Police Foundation.


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Earthquake Software Predicting Crime?

I helped NHTSA pilot the Data Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS). This evolution is interesting and anything reducing social harms is critical to our communities.

Tacoma Police Launch PredPol

Posted on Feb 18, 2013 in Predictive Policing, PredPol | No Comments

Tacoma Police, using a federal grant for funding, have launched PredPol, the predictive policing program. Here is a story from Q13 TV in Tacoma.

“Tacoma police soon will be using new, sophisticated software to try to predict and prevent five specific crimes — everything from burglaries to motor theft.


It’s called PREDPOL, short for predictive policing.

Assistant  Police Chief Pete Cribbin said the software promises to predict with high probability where the next crime will occur.

“The beauty of this is it really brings it down, really tight, to a 500-square-foot box so it is very clear where you have to be to try to disrupt the activity,” he said.

It’s a complex mathematical formula (a similar algorithm is used to predict the geographical patterns of an earthquake) that assigns a probability that a future event will occur based on past events.

Five  years of crime statistics have been stored and once the program begins, it will be updated every  three hours with real-time data.

So how is PREDPOL different from hot-spot policing?

Cops say a location is a hot spot when there is a pattern of crime in one area but it’s still one step behind the criminals. This software is a leap into the future.

“Criminals set patterns they don’t think they do, but all human beings set patterns,” Cribbin said.

It also breaks down factors of a neighborhood on why one is more appealing to crooks than others.

“L.A. was using this in one of their divisions for burglaries and they saw a 14 percent decrease in their burglaries,” he said.

The program was paid for by a federal grant and Tacoma police hope to have it going in about two weeks.”

The story can be found here

What do you think? Science or Science Fiction

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