Pillar Two: Policy and Oversight
The issues addressed in the first pillar of this report, building trust and legitimacy between law enforcement agencies and the communities we serve, underlie all questions of law enforcement policy and community oversight. If we are to carry out our responsibilities according to established policies, these policies must be reflective of community values and not lead to practices that result in disparate impacts on various segments of the community. Our policies also need to be clearly articulated to the community and implemented transparently so our agency will have credibility with our residents and the community can have faith that their guardians are always acting in their best interests.
Paramount among the policies of law enforcement organizations are those controlling use of force. Not only should there be policies for deadly and non-deadly uses of force but a clearly stated “sanctity of life” philosophy must also be in the forefront of every officer’s mind. This way of thinking should be accompanied by rigorous practical ongoing training in an atmosphere of nonjudgmental and safe sharing of views with fellow officers about how they behaved in use of force situations.
Data collection, supervision, and accountability are also part of a comprehensive systemic approach to keeping everyone safe and protecting the rights of all involved during police encounters.
ETPD Action on Pillar Two
- Voluntary External Policy Review
- Inspection Program
- Use of Force Reviews
- Early Intervention Program
- Data Driven Approach to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS)
ETPD has been in the forefront in developing and adhering to comprehensive policies on the use of force that include training, investigations, prosecutions, data collection, and information sharing. Our policies are clear, concise, and openly available for public inspection. The ETPD voluntarily submits its policies and practices for remote and on-site reviews to ensure our policies and practices reflect law enforcement best practices. ETPD has been nationally accredited since 2011 and is considered the top 1% of municipal law enforcement agencies in the
country. Accreditation is a voluntary process where departments are mandated to adhere to best practices on a state and nation level.
As of June 2020, ETPD is only 1 of 9 municipal police departments in NJ to be nationally accredited. Nationally – there are only 457 of 12,300+ municipal police departments in the country to receive this national certification.
ETPD was also the first department in the State of NJ to receive both national accreditation and state accreditation. We are only one of three agencies in the State of NJ to be both state and nationally accredited.
ETPD also collects, maintains, and analyzes demographic data on all detentions (stops, frisks, searches, summons, and arrests). Our agency conducts thorough collections for all of our officer’s statistical data to include race, gender, age and residency for all contacts made in the field to include motor vehicle and pedestrian contacts.
In the 21st Century Task Force Report, it states that Law enforcement agencies should refrain from practices requiring officers to issue a predetermined number of tickets, citations, arrests, or summonses, or to initiate investigative contacts with citizens for reasons not directly related to improving public safety, such as generating revenue. ETPD also mandates that the identification of the racial and ethnic composition of persons stopped, cited and arrested by the Evesham Township Police Department. On a semi-annual basis, Evesham Township calculates and reviews all of the above historical data. The arrest and stop data will reveal the racial and ethnic breakdown of those stopped, cited and arrested for specific offenses in Evesham Township. In order to facilitate comparative analysis of these data, per capita stop, citation and arrest rates for particular racial and ethnic groups is calculated. Evesham Township U.S. Census population data will be used to calculate these rates. These rates will reveal how many Asians, Pacific Islanders, Blacks, Latinos, American Indians and Alaska Natives, and Whites were stopped, cited or arrested for various offenses per 1,000 Evesham
Township residents of each racial/ethnic group. Because some of the people arrested or stopped may reside outside of Evesham, these rates will not be exact, but will provide a useful estimate of the degree to which the practice in question is differentially affecting Evesham Township residents. During the semi-annual review, all members of the police department are advised of their individual biased based review statistics to ensure that there are no identified issues or tendencies that need to be immediately remediated through training, counseling or discipline. The results of the meeting are included in each officer’s performance evaluation jackets along with a final report submitted to the Chief of Police.
ETPD is proud of our successful deployment of our personnel in our established DDACTS Zone. Our DDACTS operational model has been proven to be an effective and efficient manner of addressing the most consistent social harms affecting our community. ETPD sets aggressive goals to lower crashes, shoplifting's, burglaries and increase DWI arrests. As a result of the hard work and dedication of the men and women of ETPD, the following results were achieved inside the DDACTS Zone:
2019 Annual Statistical Review:
2% decrease in Motor Vehicle Accidents
No increase in DWIs
19% decrease in shopliftings
39% decrease in burglaries