The purpose of this report is to provide a proof of concept for a different, alternative method for evaluating police agencies. Our method is couched in a comparative approach, which will allow agencies to compare their performance to other police agencies. This report assesses police performance through the perceptions and experiences of recently booked arrestees.
The analysis and report presented here is prepared specifically for the Maricopa County Sherriff’s Office (MCSO) on behalf of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors (BOS) and Maricopa County Manager as part of their support of the Arizona Arrestee Reporting Information Network (AARIN). The researchers at Arizona State University and its Center for Violence Prevention and Community Safety are the authors of this report and any errors, omissions and opinions are their own and do not necessarily reflect the other parties.
The purpose of this report is to use data from a sample of recently booked arrestees in Maricopa County to examine the scope and nature of Maricopa County’s gang problem. In particular, this report supplements data presented in the bi-annual report on gangs conducted by the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission, which relies on official police data and their occasional white paper on gangs that relies on self-report data from school youth.
In the present study, researchers used interview data obtained from 1,342 recently booked adult male and female arrestees at the Central Intake booking facilities in Maricopa County, Arizona as part of the Arizona Arrestee Reporting Information Network (AARIN). The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors sponsored research at Arizona State University and established AARIN in January 2007 to monitor drug use trends, treatment needs, and at-risk behavior among recently booked arrestees in Maricopa County.
The analysis plan and the format of this report are derived from numerous meetings held over more than an eighteen month span with the AARIN project advisory board, Maricopa County leadership, and representatives from JPD. Following the guidance of the advisory board, the dissemination strategy for the AARIN project shifted from a single, broadly scoped annual summary report supplemented by smaller topic-specific reports into shorter, individual reports tailored to the specific needs and wants of six key county criminal justice agencies.
This report compares arrestees in three categories of probation history – never served probation (or not in the past 12 months), served probation in a county other than Maricopa, and served probation in Maricopa County, each defined for either lifetime or the past 12 months, ultimately yielding six analysis categories. Each of the three probation categories are mutually exclusive within a given time period (i.e. lifetime and past 12 months).