Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Are NOPD commanders talking to homicide detectives?

Did anyone hear the Warren Riley interview with John "Sputter" McConnell on WWL this morning (mp3)? The interview took place following another bloody weekend in New Orleans.

I called in a question to ask Riley how he's maintaining open lines of communication between district commanders and homicide detectives. Riley took homicide detectives out of district bureaus, and instead placed them into a centralized unit in headquarters.

Removing detectives from the districts, arguably, takes away an important resource that district commanders need in order to make them accountable for every type of crime in their assigned areas. You can't ask someone to do a job if you don't give them control over the resources they need to do the job -- it's a maxim of management of every kind, and one that's been in place at the NOPD since the COMSTAT process was implemented in New Orleans.

I wasn't able to remain tuned in to the WWL interview, so I'm wondering if Riley responded. I doubt he would have answered satisfactorily, however, since he, like many of his predecessors and affiliates in law enforcement, tend to get defensive rather than explain the logic and performance of their policies.

The problem of a centralized homicide unit was made apparent a few months ago when I asked a district commander to provide an update on an unsolved homicide investigation. The commander explained that he couldn't provide any information because homicide detectives weren't talking to him.

I did tune in again at the end of the hour to hear Riley arguing with a listener who wanted Riley to answer if he had enough manpower relative to the current post-Katrina population. Rather than use a best estimate of manpower to population, Riley got into it saying that nobody knows how many people are living in New Orleans right now.

I'm starting to question Riley's forthrightness -- if not his competence.

Related (via Adrastos):


Overview of issues in the Criminal Justice System:
  • Mr. Robert Stellingworth, President and CEO of the New Orleans Police
  • and Justice Foundation (NOPJF), and
  • Dr. Heidi Unter, VP of Research & Development for NOPJF
Update on Juvenile Court Reforms and Recovery:
  • Chief Judge David J. Bell, Orleans Parish Juvenile Court (OPJC),
  • Ms. Ilona Picou, Recovery Coordinator, OPJC and
  • Mr. Derwin Bunton, Associate Director, Juvenile Justice Program of Louisiana (JJPL)
A question and answer opportunity will follow each presentation.

The goal for this event is to give attendees some ideas on how to help support the upcoming City Sponsored Crime Summit on September 16th, and its recommendations.

WHEN: Thursday, September 7, 2006 6:30 PM

WHERE: Ashé Cultural Arts Center, 1712 Oretha Castle-Haley Blvd.
Tags: | | | | | | | Katrina Dissidents | Failure Is Not An Option | Hurricane Katrina One Year Anniversary | Crime | Warren Riley | NOPD | New Orleans Police Department


At 9/05/2006 09:27:00 AM, Anonymous adrastos said...

Thanks for posting the info on the forum, Blondie.

I completely agree with you about the homicide issue. The district commanders take the heat but have no control over the MOST important investigations in the city. It makes no sense whatsoever.

At 9/05/2006 12:49:00 PM, Blogger Schroeder said...

I'd like to hear Riley just once try to make it sound like good sense -- and allowing for a followup question (which he never does).

At 9/06/2006 12:34:00 PM, Blogger dillyberto said...

How does the rise in registered guns make you feel?

It makes me eerily edgy. I don't know what to make of the apparent fairy dust the media has sprinkled on Sheriff Harry Lee.

Harry is something.


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