Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $89,997)
New Hampshire is typically considered a safe state with low levels of crime. However, similar to any populated landscape, violence does cluster in certain parts of the state. Furthermore, consistent with relevant research, violent crime clusters within small sections of a community. Work completed by the New Hampshire Project Safe Neighborhoods Task Force using the FY2018 PSN funding demonstrated this occurrence (outlined further below). Based on the success of New Hampshire PSN efforts using FY2017 and FY2018 funding, the Task Force Selection Committee concluded that continuation of the Hot Spot Patrol Initiative would be the best evidence-based mechanism to reduce violent crime in several New Hampshire communities. By utilizing sound data sources and rigorous analysis to identify the areas where violent crime clusters in the state, in conjunction with the use of evidence based practices, the PSN Task Force will enable making our communities safer for all.
The PSN Task Force has identified place-based crime problems as a primary problem based upon current data analysis. There is a significant amount of research showing that crime clusters into “hot spots” (Sherman, 1989; Sherman & Weisburd, 1995; Braga, 2005; Weisburd et al, 2006; Braga & Bond, 2008; Guerette & Bowers, 2009; Williams & Coupe, 2017). Furthermore, the frequency and duration of these hot spot patrols is well established (Koper, 1995; Williams & Coupe, 2017). Importantly, a cohesive community creates a tone that is inviting to the good will and sends a message to would-be offenders that violence is not tolerated in those spaces. A systematic review and meta-analysis of focused deterrence and crime control strategies by Braga, Weisburd and Tuchan (2018) found that a “community-based action approach” was a key component to successful crime reduction initiatives. As such, community outreach and involvement in hot spots is an essential addition to increased officer presence.
Using the strong evidence-based initiative of hot spot policing, the New Hampshire PSN project will fund Hot Spot patrols in the cities of Manchester, Nashua, Concord, and Farmington. These cities comprise some of the larger and more urban communities in New Hampshire.