NYPD Ticket Fixing Scandal: Criminologists Link Practice to Downgrading Crimes

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Two criminologists are drawing a connection between the NYPD's looming ticket fixing scandal and "fixing" complaint reports to manipulate crime statistics.

In an article provided to the Voice, Professors John Eterno and Eli Silverman argue that the latter is just as common as the former, because of the constant pressure for numbers emanating from police headquarters and the CompStat strategy.

Those numbers include drops in major crime, more summonses, more stop-and-frisks, and downgrading felonies to misdemeanors.

"This forces low-level officers to write summonses, even when it may conflict with the mission of the department," they write. "This is one of the reasons why the department has someone to void summonses at the Chief of Department's office. "

The cause, they say, is that under CompStat, commanders are less concerned with integrity in their statistics than they are with making the numbers look good.

"It is time to hold the upper echelon accountable," they write. "If they were not aware, they should have been. Prosecution of lower ranks is shameful. Those in higher positions need to be leaders and take responsibility."

Eterno is a associate dean of criminal justice at Molloy College. Silverman is a professor emeritus at John Jay College. They are working on a book about CompStat.

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Captain Frank
Captain Frank

Graham-- this is nonsense or, rather, conflating two issues which should remain distinct save one FACT: Ray Kelly is responsible for both of them and, given he came up in the 71st Pct in Hasidic W'burg, he knows ** EXTREMELY WELL ** what ticket fixing is all about. Even more, what ** not ** writing tickets is all about.

Not to say it's just a Beard thing-- it's not. ** EVERY ** judge, every ADA, every person on the staff of the Mayor, City Council and Borough Pres offices who's gotten fixed is ** GUILTY **... That most of them could ** AFFORD ** to pay the tix makes this all the more galling.

Finally, while NYPD jerks itself off over bicycles, not even issuing summons to the biggest idiots (people who one way the wrong way and Chinese delivery dudes on electric bikes), blatant red light running is rampant in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx.

Of course, what's the point of writing movers if some white shirt schmuck is going to have them fixed anyway?


What?! What do the tickets have to do with Compstat? Based upon the theories put forward by these two "criminologists," tickets would never be voided because the officers would feel too much pressure to count every ticket issued. Their arguments, theories and explanations appear to be all over the board. Rather than seeking every opportunity to trash Compstat, as though it is a living entity rather than a management philosophy, perhaps Eterno and Silverman should provide concrete examples of different management philosophies that would support efforts to reduce crime, maintain accountability and achieve efficiencies within a police department.

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