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State Police Investigative Structure and the Adoption of Intelligence-Led Policing

NCJ Number
Policing Volume: 31 Issue: 1 Dated: 2008 Pages: 109-128
Jerry H. Ratcliffe; Ray Guidetti
Date Published
20 pages
After presenting an overview of organizational changes in the New Jersey State Police (NJSP) Investigations Branch and how it has adapted to intelligence-led policing, this study assessed the impact on key staff affected by the change, with attention to a drug-gang investigation called Operation Nine Connect (ONC).
The model for changes in the NJSP's Investigations Branch was the United Kingdom's National Intelligence Model (NIM), which emerged from the central tenets of intelligence-led policing as a key analytical tool for effective and efficient policing. Intelligence-led policing makes the collection and analysis of intelligence pivotal to organizational planning and decisionmaking. It is a policing philosophy that features a managerially centered, top-down decisionmaking format. It is proactive through the cultivation of informants and surveillance, with heightened attention to recidivists and serious offenders. Under the new organization of the NJSP's Investigations Branch, it is responsible for protecting the State from organized crime, terrorism, violent criminals, and illegal activity in general. This mandate requires using proactive investigative measures and forensic science techniques for collecting evidence, documenting illegal activity, and arresting suspects charged with crimes. This paper describes in detail the new centralized and integrated Investigations Branch. The new organization has been a change for the better regarding the ability of intelligence analysts to influence decisionmakers. This is illustrated in the ONC's effort to counter a large drug gang in the State. A case study of the ONC documents the flow of information, intelligence, and decisionmaking outcomes that resulted in a large gang bust. ONC's success shows the impact that the statewide intelligence estimate had on target selection. Important lessons learned from this operation are reviewed. 2 figures, 2 notes, and 68 references