Pittsfield Police Continue with Records Software, Provide Crime Stats to Board

 01/29/2016 - 13:10
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Pittsfield Public Safety Director Matt Harshberger explains the benefits of his department being involved with CLEMIS a server law enforcement agencies use to store records and share information. Photo by Jim Pruit

The Pittsfield Public Safety Department received the Board of Trustee’s blessing on a renewal of its membership agreement with Oakland County to continue participation in the Courts and Law Enforcement Management Information System (CLEMIS).

The annual membership and user fees amount to approximately $45,200. The department has been a member of CLEMIS since all the Washtenaw County law enforcement agencies joined in 2005 and has tapped into other services over the years. The network also includes Oakland, Wayne, Macomb and Livingston counties.

It wasn’t until 2007 before the Washtenaw agencies could get up to speed,” Public Safety Director Matt Harshberger said. Where Pittsfield started out using CLEMIS for data sharing, it now taps into many services including: CLEMIS provides the following programs

  • Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) – Dispatching and tracking system for police and fire calls for service (emergencies and non-emergencies) for all incidents (crimes, crashes, medicals, traffic safety, general assistance, etc.)
  • Records Management System (RMS) – All police department incident reporting is created and stored in the CLEMIS netRMS, which has redundant servers located in Oakland County. System automatically submits incident data to state and federal authorities for statistics collection and reporting.
  • Picture Link – Digital photographing for booking photographs of persons arrested by the police department and a photograph database system (of all CLEMIS agencies) for investigatory uses, including creating photograph line-ups and general suspect description queries.
  • Livescan – Digital fingerprinting system for persons arrested for crimes, including identifying subjects providing false identification. System automatically submits fingerprints to courts, state and federal authorities. 

"There are some other companies that are a lot more expensive,” Harshberger said.

While multiple agencies share in the storage of information, each department controls their files. If another agency wanted access to a file, it would to submit a Freedom of Information ACT request, Harshberger said.

“So it has to come back to us before we do anything about it and often times it goes to (attorney) Jim Fink first,” Harshberger said. While no system is hack-proof, CLEMIS has several firewalls built in that keeps the information protected, he said. “I have not heard of any hacking incident of the CLEMIS service,” Harshberger said.

Other services include:

  • Evidence/Property Room Management – Digital system for logging, storing, and processing all evidence and property collected by police officers or otherwise turned into the police department.
  • Crime Mapping – Collects data regarding crimes occurring in the township and geo-maps the crimes for public reporting.
  • Crimeview Dashboard – Collects detailed data regarding crimes to assist police personnel with problem-solving efforts reg. identifying and solving crimes that have occurred and preventing future crimes from occurring.

“It allows us to write our police reports and store them on the servers of Clemis,” Harshberger said. “It allows us to coordinate with other agencies.”

CLEMIS is also used to assist police command with allocating police resources when/where needed in the township.

  • Mobile Computer Terminals (MCTs) – laptop computers in all police patrol vehicles allow officers to communicate with dispatch, fellow officers, supervisors, receive call for service information, complete police reports, access the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN), and Secretary of State (SOS) for warrant/wanted and driver license status checks.
  • Ticket and Crash Reporting – Digital system for issuing tickets for traffic and ordinance violations and reporting/submitting official state crash reports (UD-10).

Harshberger likes the ability to share photos with other agencies to see if someone they are looking at has run into another agency.

“If we need to create a photo lineup, we can grab all those photos,” Harshberger said. Having evidence logged in with a bar code helps make managing that area easier and more efficient, he said.

As far as statistics go, the department reported the following major crimes for December and for all of 2015. The township had one homicide in 2015, compared to none in 2014; There were two criminal sexual conduct cases in December, down from three in 2014.

Overall, the township saw a 16.1 percent drop in CSC cases, from 31 to 26; Robberies were up 200 percent from December 2014 (3-1) and 60 percent year to date (16-10); There were five aggravated assault cases last month, a 500 percent increase from December 2014. 

For the year, incidents were up 41.2 percent (48-34); Residential burglaries were down 50 percent from one in December 2015, compared to two last December (2). YTD, residential burglaries showed an increase of 22.6 percent this year from last year (38 this year compared to 31 last year); All other burglaries (3) occurred in December 2015 as well as 2014. YTD cases decreased 9.4 percent this year from last year (29 to 32).

Larceny was down 52.6 percent this December (9) compared to last December (19). YTD, larceny increased 5.5 percent this year from last year (153 this year compared to 145 last year); Larceny from Vehicles were the same this December (15) as compared to last December. YTD, larceny from vehicles decreased 9.6 percent this year from last year (132 to 146); Motor Vehicle Theft (MVT) decreased 66.7 percent this December (1) compared to last December (3). YTD, MVT decreased 36 percent this year from last year (32 to 50 last year); Malicious Damage of Property (MDOP) showed a decrease of 14.3 percent this December (12) compared to last December (14). YTD, MDOP showed a decrease of 6.8 percent this year from last year (110 to 118); Drug/Narcotic violations increased 41.7 percent this December (17) compared to last December (12). YTD, narcotic violations decreased 9.7 percent this year from last year (269 to 298).