Every Wednesday promptly at 1:30 p.m., 50 or more cops and some civilian
staffers assemble in the meeting room at the Glendale Police Department
for the fastest 60 minutes in crime-fighting.
They call it the “Week in Crime.”
in every car, software that connects them to every database, video
surveillance systems on the streets and increasingly sophisticated
analytical techniques gives a civilian the feeling he has entered a
world that resembles crime-of-the-week TV shows like NCIS.
weekly meeting is a key element in the department’s strategy to go
beyond reacting when incidents occur. These days, the city’s police seek
to proactively suppress crime, even predict where and when it will
occur so they can be there waiting when it happens.
In the last
two years, Chief Ron De Pompa has expanded the “Week in Crime” meetings
from a few top commanders to include everyone in the department, often
as much as 25% of the force. The goal is to get everyone on the same
page and to share their knowledge and skills as they review the who,
what, when, where and why of every reported crime in the city — all
pinpointed on a giant screen, analyzed for patterns, examined for the
On this day, the problem of theft from work vans
is the top item, a problem that is getting worse as the release of
about 2,000 convicts into L.A. County every month from state prisons has
started — half on parole, half to jails that are so overcrowded that
other inmates are being set free early to make room for them.
to a cluster of break-ins where tools and even heavy equipment is being
stolen from vans, a crime analyst points to graphics showing when the
thefts occurred and how they are concentrated on weekends from midnight
to 6 a.m.
“They’re good at it … blending in unnoticed. No one hears or sees anything,” he notes, based on reviewing all the reports.