Case Studies

Predicting and preventing crime in Los Angeles

In a city of over four million, and with a crime rate that rose in all categories in 2015, the Los Angeles Police Department knew that it needed to take action. To help tackle crime, Los Angeles piloted a new tool incorporating some of the top Smart Security thinking: PredPol. The mission of PredPol is simple: place officers at the right time and location to give them the best chance of preventing crime.

The tool, which has been piloted in the Los Angeles and Santa Cruz police departments, uses three data points – past type, place, and time of crime – to predict criminal behavior. These data points are fed into a unique algorithm, which incorporates criminal behavior patterns. Law enforcement then receive customized crime predictions, automatically generated for each shift in their jurisdiction. These predictions are highly specific and lay out the places, mapped to 500 by 500 feet squares, and times where crimes are most likely to occur.  While still only a pilot, PredPol has already brought down property crimes by 13 percent in one of the divisions.

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