Friday, August 11, 2006

Philadelphia's Problems of Its Own Making

Alphecca: Tough Policing When you fight crime intelligently crime goes down. When you don't crime goes up. Jeff at Alphecca looks at what changes in police have done to the statistics for Philadelphia crime.
Ed Rendell chose [NYPD Police Chief William] Bratton aide John Timoney as the city's police chief. Without new gun laws, expanded anti-violence programs or "Kumbaya" speeches, in two years homicides dropped by a quarter (418 to 292).

Timoney's combativeness angered police captains, so when he left in 2002, Mayor Street replaced him with a genial insider, Sylvester Johnson. He refused to bully captains the way Timoney did, and Mayor Street cut the number of cops. Like President Bush, he figured a small force could do the job. The result: Philadelphia's murder rate approaches pre-Timoney highs.
So Philadelphia stopped insisting that police captains do their job, reduced the number of police and now the mayor is surprised he has a crime problem. What an idiot.

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