Law Office of Tim Powers
New computer algorithm models are being used by law enforcement agencies
to determine where to send officers to stop crime or prevent criminal
acts before they happen. According to officials, the programs are working
successfully, but critics anticipate that they could lead to 4th Amendment
The technologies are being used nationwide and could potentially be employed
by agencies in cities all across Denton County and the DFW metroplex.
Any violation is a valid criminal defense and grounds for potential case
"Predictive policing" sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie.
Police officers use programs that quickly analyze data to determine where
crimes may be committed before they actually happen. Many legal observers
see a risk in the programs and the potential for infringement of citizen
rights. They could eventually lead to unlawful search and seizure or a
justification for probable cause.
Supporters of the technology see the benefit of predicting crimes before
they happen. Officers claim to see a reduction in burglaries and other
property crimes by placing officers in high-crime areas. While "crime
mapping" is a common practice, the computer database is able to quickly
process information on past crimes and possible patterns. By tracking
crimes, the agencies they deploy officers where they consider to be "trouble
spots" in areas as small as 500 square feet.
While the idea of preventing crimes before they happen is attractive, it
could potentially give law enforcement agencies a power that could lead
to racial profiling or stereotyping certain neighborhoods. Citizens do
have an interest in crime prevention, though not at the cost of Constitutional rights.
With all new technology, law enforcement agencies must be accountable for
4thAmendment search and seizure violations.
If you are seeking aggressive criminal representation by an experienced
criminal defense attorney for your Denton County criminal case or arrest
in Denton County, contact the offices of Tim Powers today. There is no
charge or obligation for the initial consultation. 940.580.2899.
*Tim Powers is an attorney licensed to practice law by the Supreme Court
of Texas. Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice. For
legal advice about any specific legal question you should directly consult