INTELLIGENCE-LED POLICING STARTS WITH AN INTELLIGENT RMS Learn how three FBINAA graduates have used their RMS system to make their agencies smarter, more proactive, and more intelligence-led In the 21st Century, intelligence underpins the daily actions of every local and county law enforcement organization. For most local law enforcement agencies, the primary source of information to help make informed decisions is the agency's own records management sys- tem (RMS). But, nearly two full decades into the 21st Century, many local law enforcement agencies are still struggling with RMS systems that have not ‘kept up with the times’.
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W hile they may do an adequate job of producing required reports and statistics, these legacy RMS systems lock the information - and the intelligence it can generate - away from the very people who provide that information in the first place, and who rely on it to do their job. With the focus of this issue of the FBINAA Associate Magazine on Intelligence, the chiefs and other command staff from three police departments - all past or future Academy participants - de- scribe how their RMS has helped them become and remain truly intelligence-led law enforcement agencies. GETTING GOOD DATA; CAPTURING THE RIGHT DATA Being able to get good intelligence out means first putting good data in. Whether in the patrol car on scene or in the office, it starts with patrol completing incident reports thoroughly and accurately. The need for this will come into even more sharp focus as agencies across the country begin to transition from summary reporting to the more robust data needs of National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS) . Upper Moreland (PA) Police Department Chief Michael Murphy (FBINAA 183) stresses the need to "take time to make sure it's good information. The results will benefit you later when you want to mine that data." That means making data entry simple and efficient, elimi- nating redundant data entry, and not requiring a user to jump back and forth between multiple screens. By incorporating all of the data elements the system needs for an incident report into a single, logically organized screen, for example, the intelligent RMS can save the officer time and eliminate the frustration which might result in potentially-critical information not being entered. With the right data, the RMS will automatically open an incident report and populate and update all of the relevant system records, including master name, vehicle and property - all without user in-
tervention – and will create links between these entities to inform investigations later on. Chief Ken Truver (FBINAA 225) and Lieutenant Brian McKe- own (FBINAA 264) of the Castle Shannon (PA) Police Department both emphasize how important it is to have the intelligent RMS capture the right data in the first place. Case in point: with an increase in theft of motor vehicles a few years ago, the depart- ment wanted to be able to track those more carefully. By creating a new ‘incident type’ code and adding a ‘theft of auto’ to the drop down box list of incident types, a simple click now captures that information for future search and reporting. "I can quickly go back over the last year and pull up every theft of a motor vehicle," says Chief Truver. Users of the CODY Systems’ RMS Anywhere , Chief Truver and users at the department enjoy the ability to modify the system this way on their own rather than having to contract a vendor for these changes. CODY RMS "is highly tailorable to the specific agency and its needs," adds Lieutenant McKeown. "That's what I like." The intelligent RMS will also eliminate duplicate data entry wherever possible. After a traffic accident, says Chief Truver, "we used to have to do two separate reports - one for the state crash and citation system and one for the RMS." However, CODY built an interface between these two systems so "now it's one-stop," with data entered once in our RMS and the relevant data automatically sent to the state. That's what technology is supposed to do, Chief Truver believes. "If it's not easier for my staff, I'm not interested." DATA TRANSFORMED INTO ACTIONABLE INTEL While ease of data entry is certainly a key first step, the real ‘magic’ of an intelligent RMS is its ability to inherently link any and all of the record data in the system - on persons, addresses and
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