Intelligence Led Policing

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Capella University
June 18, 2010



The Early Years of Intelligence-Led Policing

Intelligence units within law enforcement organizations of the early 1920s, adopted the dossier or [database system] that was developed and perfected by the military (Carter, 2005). Intelligence files are simply dossiers; they are files based on the collection and/or gathering of raw data received─in reference to individuals who are considered offenders, who may be actively involved with criminals, or individuals who may be considered a threat to the safety and good order within a given (Carter, 2005). During the erly days of prohibition bootleggers and other prolific criminals of early 20th century─such as Al Capone and other notorious gangsters─these were the typical types of individuals who law enforcement organizations kept dossier files on (Carter, 2005).

During the 1930s, minimal gains were made in the arena of law enforcement intelligence. During this era, the immediate threat to the United States was the economy, not criminals or the offenses they may have committed (Carter, 2005). However, during the latter part of the 1930s, new more ominous problem was Communism. Law enforcement organizations throughout the United States once again turned to using the dossiers to track these individuals (Carter, 2005).

During the 1960s, law enforcement organizations across the United States met two of the most significant challenges head on where the intelligence dossiers once again appeared to be an important tool of choice in documenting individual activity: these challenges were the Civil Rights movement and the anti-Vietnam War movement (Donahue, 2006). In both situations, these groups appeared to be operating outside of mainstream society. To the majority of the population these groups appeared as being un-American (Donahue, 2006). Over the years the dossier system had become an accepted tool for intelligence units within law enforcement organizations; thus as new more challenging situations were presented it was apparent to the law enforcment organization to employ well-established methods of documents groups activities (Gross, 2006).

Early Stages of Intelligence-Led Policing

After considerable discussion and review, the Rockefeller Commission in 1975 recommended restraining the CIA’s authorization to carry out intelligence operations within the United States (Gross, 2006). The Rockefeller Commission suggested that the Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) and the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) establish jurisdictional procedures for their particular agencies (Schertzing, 2007). In 1976, Congressman Pike Chairman of the House Select Committee on Intelligence made the following recommendations that would place additional limitations on jurisdictional overlap between specific agencies that were directly responsible for national security intelligence and agencies that were directly accountable for law enforcement intelligence (Schertzing, 2007). The recommendations of the Church Committee were by far the most sweeping and encompassing in relation to the developing the wall of separation (Schertzing, 2007).

Many high-ranking officals perceived the need for intelligence functions within law enforcement organizations even though successes were minimal (Pickering, McCulloch, & Wright-Neville, 2008). Thus, new substantial and critical assessments relating to how recommendations and/or suggestions regarding how best to improve operations (Pickering, McCulloch, & Wright-Neville, 2008). The perceived key constraint that hampered both state and local intelligence units was their failure to move beyond the gathering of data to a more efficient method of analyzing the collected data (Pickering, McCulloch, & Wright-Neville, 2008). The resolution that was seen to resolve...
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