250 words agree or disagree
This week we are focusing on intelligence led policing, and the changes seen in this arena since 2001. I think focusing on local law enforcement measures will not be focusing as much on the core concepts of this course, so I’d like to discuss the issue in terms of federal and DoD terms. After the terror attacks of 9/11 it was determined that there was a need for improved intelligence sharing between local state and federal law enforcement agencies. Since analysis revealed that there had been vital intelligence squirreled away by various agencies in the interest of preserving a source or not knowing the value of the intelligence they possessed, it is reasonable to believe that a robust intelligence sharing system would be beneficial in thwarting future operations (DHS). Thus, we have arrived presently to 77 fusion centers scattered across the United States. These centers provide a brick and mortar locale for collaboration between local state and federal agencies allowing rapid sharing analysis and reporting of important intelligence. I found two interesting articles regarding fusion centers and their varying levels of successes and failures. The first brings up an interesting point about the effectiveness managing policies and standardizing procedures between the various fusion centers, as well as managing the different levels of accesses and authorizations that the sister agencies hold within a fusion center. With the multitude of queries and search results generated daily at these centers, it’s paramount that there is proper oversight and accountability (Waterman & Wang, 2011). The second article examined some of the pitfalls affecting the consistent flow of information back and forth as well as how effectible utilized the reported products of these fusion centers is. According to the article, only about half of the local and state law enforcement officers polled had any contact with a fusion center at all, and those that did mainly reached out when they believed it would serve their own investigations, not in order to relay information relating to terror or other threats (Carter, 2016). The fact is that the majority of products a fusion center puts out is unlikely to be useful to a beat officer at a local or state department, but the upwards flow of information, that is, an officer trooper or deputy getting a hunch or discovering something potentially incriminating, is extremely useful for the fusion center to help them make those ground level contacts and begin to build more complete intelligence pictures.
Moving into the future as intelligence and the world as a whole become increasingly reliant on cyber avenues and technology to communicate, these fusion centers must remain committed to forging strong bonds of cooperation between their sources (ie, state and local law enforcement), and to abiding by applicable laws while producing the most comprehensive product possible.
Branum, A., Dietz, J., Brewer, J., & Goldman, J. (2011). Would a distributed model of fusion center make information sharing more effective? (ProQuest Dissertations Publishing). Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/903973562/
Carter, J., Lewandowski, C., & May, G. (2016). Disparity Between Fusion Center Web Content and Self-Reported Activity. Criminal Justice Review, 41(3), 335–351. https://doi.org/10.1177/0734016816651925
Department of Homeland Security. (2011). Fusion Center Success Stories. Homeland Security. https://www.dhs.gov/fusion-center-success-stories
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