Crime Prevention through Environmental Design and Community Policing

Crime Prevention through Environmental Design and Community Policing

The article by Dan Fleissner and Fred Heinemann outlines that Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) is a crime prevention strategy that spells out how physical environment can be adequately designed to reduce the potentiality of occurrence of a crime (Fleissner and Heinemann 1). This can be achieved through the creation of environmental and social conditions that maximize risks to the offenders. In other words, the conditions are aimed at increasing the likelihood of detection, challenge, and apprehension of criminals. Moreover, the conditions created should maximize the efforts one requires to commit a crime, thus, increasing time and resources to commit a crime. Consequently, the strategy should eliminate conditions likely to encourage inappropriate behaviors in the society or neighborhood. Guidelines provided by this policy highlight the physical environmental aspects which affect the behavior of people and how productive use of space can be used to reduce crime. One example is that, CPTED guidelines can correct poor environmental designs of street lighting and landscaping to make it easy to detect criminals.

CPTED and Community Policing in Securing Neighborhoods

CPTED and community policing can be used to enhance security in neighborhoods by changing how people in these places operate by altering their design. Both can be used to encourage intended users to frequent sites to make them less hospitable to criminals by promoting activity support in the neighborhoods. The community in South Los Angeles, for instance, has found out that street crime is significantly lowered when many people visit farmers’ markets. Furthermore, CPTED and community policing can be integrated by getting valuable inputs from community members, especially those with varied perceptions and opinions. Once valuable data input has been received from stakeholders, appropriate problem solving and planning is conducted to take into account diverse views on how to make neighborhoods secure. CPTED and community policing can be used to increase complexities to commit the crime. To give an example, people can mark an area as problematic and insecure and then address all the physical environmental strategies that are appropriate to prevent occurrence of a crime in that particular area. This provides a mechanism to demarcate and identify neighborhoods that harbor criminals and those that do not. Once identification has been conducted, appropriate security measure can be put in place to ensure that criminals are discouraged from committing crimes thereby improving safety in neighborhoods.

Success of CPTED and Community Policing

To be successful, both CPTED and community policing often rely on partnerships with communities and other stakeholders to implement crime prevention stratagems. Both programs are known to use problem-solving techniques to effectively secure neighborhoods and reduce criminal activities. According to the article, both initiatives first help identify the potential problem and thereafter recommend solutions for the problem (Fleissner and Heinemann 2).  Therefore, CPTED and community policing have been successful in securing neighborhoods because they have effectively protected parks and public places in America. This has been achieved through steps, such as the refurbishment of parks, increased lighting infrastructure, and closing public places at given periods and times. In liaison with community and other stakeholders, CPTED and community policing initiatives have been critical in regulating access to government buildings and certain areas in neighborhoods. Community awareness has also been created in American suburbs to encourage owners of abandoned and deteriorated buildings to repair, secure, or demolish them to deny criminals spots for carrying out their nefarious activities. Moreover, CPTED and community policing have managed to secure neighborhoods through provisions of hardening tactics, discouraging loiteringand trespassing as well as implementing security standards to govern communities and other social places.



Work Cited

Fleissner, Dan, and Fred Heinemann. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design and Community Policing. National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice, 1996.