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Crime Analysis Unit
Mission Statement:

The primary mission of the Visalia Police Department Crime Analysis Unit is to provide the highest level of assistance to operational personnel by collecting, analyzing and disseminating crime related data in an effort to recognize crime patterns, identify criminal suspects and reduce crime.

For additional information, call (559) 713-4420.

Crime Statistics

For Crime Statistics, click here

History of the Unit

The Crime Analysis Unit was formed on November, 1, 1982. The purpose was to track career criminals and provide crime statistics.  Crime analysis is an evolving profession that has changed from basic “statistic gathering” to an analytical position where data is analyzed and projections are made as to expected criminal activity.  Today, the Unit's functions includes intelligence gathering and dissemination of that information.  

Crime analysis has advanced far beyond the pin map and a cursory examination of the modus operandi file.  In a time of continuing concern over the fear and reality of some of the high crime rates in the industrialized world, crime analysis represents a cost-effective way to drive down crime without adding large amounts of police resources (IACA).

The recent successes of community policing efforts, often linked to progressive crime analysis units within police departments, signify continued expansion of the community policing philosophy and its associated need for current and substantial information about the community.  Crime analysis professionals can supply that critical information.

What is crime analysis?

Crime analysis work requires high-level research, analytical, and communication skills.  Curricula already exist in several colleges to prepare crime analysts.  These developments are essentially the same steps which all other professions have taken in order to achieve academic and professional recognition (IACA).[1]

According to Steven Gottlieb in his book, First Report to Final Arrest [2], the following is a definition of crime analysis:

“..a set of systematic, analytical processes directed at providing timely and pertinent information relative to crime patterns and trend correlations to assist operational and administrative personnel in planning the deployment of resources for the prevention and suppression of criminal activities, aiding the investigative process, and increasing apprehensions and the clearance of cases. Within this context, crime analysis supports a number of department functions, including patrol deployment, special operations and tactical units, investigations, planning and research, crime prevention and administrative services (budgeting and program planning).”

This definition has become standard practices in the crime analysis arena.  Also, the following types of analysis can be found nationwide and certainly in the VPD Crime Analysis Unit of today.  

  1. Tactical Crime Analysis:  To provide information to law enforcement officers in order to identify specific crime problems which in turn will lead to the arrest of criminal suspects.
  2. Strategic Crime Analysis: To provide information concerning long-range problems concerning crime rate increases and decreases as well as provide resource acquisition and allocation information.
  3. Administrative Crime Analysis: To provide economic, geographic, social and other general information to administrators.
  4. [1] International Association of Crime Analysts. 2001. "Crime Analysis and the Struggle for   Legitimacy."

    [2] Gottlieb, Steven (1994).  Crime Analysis: first report to final arrest.  Montclair, CA. Alpha Publishing, CA.

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