Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


LAPD Chief Bratton Testifies Before Congressional Committee, Talks about Predictive Policing

Tom Cruise in Minority Report
Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your tax-deductible financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.
William Bratton, the soon-to-be retired Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, was in Washington D.C. today, urging members of congress to make a wireless public safety broadband network a reality nationwide. In his testimony to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, he talks how such a network could help the development of predictive policing:
In my 40+ year law enforcement career, I have been both a witness to and part of the evolution in policing technology. When I began as a police officer in Boston, the walkie-talkies that were available to us were so big and bulky that no one even wanted to carry them. While I was Commissioner at the NYPD, we developed the COMPSTAT model that utilized timely information, gained through technology, and we were able to drastically reduce crime rates. Today, many agencies have established Real Time Crime Centers that are leveraging new technology to do an even more effective job of fighting crime. Very soon, we will be moving to a Predictive Policing model where, by studying real time crime patterns, we can anticipate where a crime is likely to occur. Without question, this evolution has been driven by the improvements in information technology. Of course, in order to be useful, information needs to be relevant, accurate, and timely. But just as important, it must be accessible. New technologies such as automated license plate readers, biometrics, medical telemetry, automated vehicle location, and streaming video only scratch the surface of the capabilities that will be carried by broadband networks.

There's a lot of good in this and, of course, a lot that's broadly explained here that could concern privacy advocates, such as automated vehicle location and other controversial ideas brought up in the movie, Minority Report. Bratton's full testimony can be read here (.pdf).
Most Read