January 17, 2012
As I read chapter seven “Patrol and Traffic “, I learn that a reactive patrol is a form of random patrol. Random patrol is said to be incident driven, or reactive, in that officers are responding to crimes only after they occur, either through rapid response to calls for service or to a violation or call in progress. Due to officer constantly moving it makes responding to these 911 calls easier and faster to respond. The specific activities an officer engages in while on random patrol vary significantly across officers, times, locations, and departments, because much of the time spent on patrol is officer initiated (Grant & Terry, 2008). I also learned about proactive patrol which is known as a Directed patrol. A direct patrol focuses more on targeted hot spots, crime problems, and/or offenders. Directed patrol addresses the problem-identification component of the problem solving process (Grant & Terry, 2008). Sometimes a directed patrol can occur on an informal level; this may be when an officer regularly drives past hot spots during random wanderings or parking the squad car in a specific location when writing reports are examples of an informal level. If policing agencies adopted only one of these patrol styles it would be harder to have police discretion. The condition of officer’s reaction to certain responds would change. If there was only reactive patrol officers would never be able to try to stop crimes before they happen. It would be wonderful to be able to stop all crimes before they happen but in all actuality we know this is not possible and that is why we need reactive and proactive patrol to keep our streets safe.
Grant, H. B., & Terry, K. J. (2008). Law Enforcement. Patrol and Traffic, 7(Chapter 7), 171-172.