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An Assessment of Police Officers’ Perception of Hotspots: What Can Be Done to Improve Officer’s Situational Awareness?

1
Ministry of Interior, Republic of Serbia, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
2
Department of Criminalistics, University of Criminal Investigation and Police Studies, 11080 Belgrade, Serbia
3
Department of Informatics and Computer Science, University of Criminal Investigation and Police Studies, 11080 Belgrade, Serbia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2019, 8(6), 260; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi8060260
Received: 17 April 2019 / Revised: 21 May 2019 / Accepted: 28 May 2019 / Published: 1 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Crime Mapping and Analysis Using GIS)
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Abstract

The idea behind patrol activity is that police officers should be the persons best acquainted with the events and people in their patrol area. This implies that they should have access to relevant data and information (e.g., where and how to pay attention, when and how crimes are committed) in order to effectively perform their police duties. To what extent their perceptions of the places prone to crime (hotspots) are accurate and what the implications are for police efficiency if they are incorrect is an important question for law enforcement officials. This paper presents the results of a study on police practice in Serbia. The study was conducted on a sample of 54 police officers and aimed to determine the accuracy of the perception of residential burglary hotspots and to evaluate the ways police officers are informed about crimes. The results of the study have shown that the situational awareness of police officers is not at a desired level, with ineffective dissemination of relevant data and information as one of the possible reasons. View Full-Text
Keywords: police; crime analysis; GIS; residential burglaries; spatial perception; crime mapping police; crime analysis; GIS; residential burglaries; spatial perception; crime mapping
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Ilijazi, V.; Milic, N.; Milidragovic, D.; Popovic, B. An Assessment of Police Officers’ Perception of Hotspots: What Can Be Done to Improve Officer’s Situational Awareness? ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2019, 8, 260.

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