Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2006 What good are Detroit Police Mini Stations? Previous Next
Top of pageBottom of page

Ghetto_butterfly
Member
Username: Ghetto_butterfly

Post Number: 564
Registered: 09-2004
Posted From: 68.60.139.186
Posted on Friday, December 30, 2005 - 8:16 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Last night my friend came over and as usually parked his car in my gated parking lot. This morning when he wanted to leave, his car was gone - stolen right out of the gated parking lot. Luckily, his 10-year old Dodge Stratos isn't very valuable, he used it mainly to go back and forth to work and he's got several cars. Still, it put a bad light on my neighborhood/city that I'm trying so hard to defend all the time. He called the police and was told that he has to file a report in person at the precinct where the car was stolen, which in this case would have been the station at St. Jean and E. Jefferson. When we got there, there was a sign saying that they had moved to Gratiot and Gunston. So we went to the Mini Station at Alter and Mack. There were 2 cops there but they said that they can't file a report, technically they wouldn't even be there but for the fact that they had to use the station's bathroom. One of the cops then went on to rant about the uselessness and inefficiency of these mini stations cause they really serve no real purpose, thanks to decisions made by their police administration, thanks to the mayor, etc. So my question is - what's the purpose of these mini stations anyway if they're not manned, if they can't take any reports, just a place for cops to use the bathroom?
Top of pageBottom of page

Ray1936
Member
Username: Ray1936

Post Number: 166
Registered: 01-2005
Posted From: 207.200.116.134
Posted on Friday, December 30, 2005 - 9:07 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The mini-station concept was a brainchild of Coleman A. Young during his initial run for Mayor in 1974. He proposed two mini-stations within each of the (then) thirteen precincts. After election, the administration of the DPD, naturally seeking to please the new mayor, jumped into the plan with both feet.

The leases for 26 storefronts were quickly signed, but manpower was always a problem. The minis were closed more than they were open. Outside of a handful of reports taken and an occasional neighborhood community meeting, they did little to fulfill the primary function of policing -- the prevention of crime.

In 1980, a central administration was established for the mini-stations. The annual report of the DPD for that year brags of them as follows.

"The Mini-Station Administration Unit began in 1980 with forty-nine mini-stations and two mobile mini-stations. The mini-stations were staffed by the parent precinct and administered by the Headquarters Unit. The mobile mini-stations were split, East and West, and had approximately fifteen police officers assigned to each unit from the Mini-Station Administration Unit.

"The Mini-station Administration Unite was reorganized on August 1, 1980. The Unit was made into a Section with a total of fifty-seven police officers being assigned by August 24, 1980. The Mini-Station Section is now responsible to the Chief of Police organizationally and all mini-stations are manned by police officers assigned from the Mini-Station Section, not the precincts. Each officer is crime prevention trained, and along with the responsibility of ascertaining that his mini is manned by volunteers from 9 am to 9 pm, is heavily involved in crime prevention programs such as Neighborhood Watch, Busines Watch, and various security surveys. The mini station officers are assigned scooters, some having marked scout cars. They are available to attend local community meetings and generally hendle local service complaints and follow up visits where a crime has occurred, offering prevention assisitance. The officers, as always, are available to make crime reports and respond to any police emergencies.

"The Mobile Mini-stations continued to operate as they had prior to the layoffs in September, 1979, with less than half of the assigned personnel. They were sent to high crime areas of the precincts for up to three weeks at a time, and their presence was welcomed by the citizens and precinct officers alike. The mobile van was parked in a high visibility area with the police officers working beats and cars in that specific area.

"The Mini-Station section currently has 49 mini stations, and the assigned police officers are experiencing tremendous citizen support for the new concept. It is anticipated that first quarter statistics in 1981 will show an upturn in Crime Prevention work and all mini-stations will be manned daily by civilian volunteers"

*** *** ***

Well, that optimistic view aside, they never did accomplish all that much in the ensuing 25 years. Most of the officers who volunteered for mini-station duty did so because it was a day job with weekends off. What the hell, wouldn't you, too? And as Ghetto butterfly observes, when you need them, they just ain't there. Besides, I don't want to see a police officer sitting at a desk in a storefront waiting for someone to walk in; I wanna see him scrounging the neighborhoods looking for shit to happen. That's one man's view; mine.
Top of pageBottom of page

Rasputin
Member
Username: Rasputin

Post Number: 3390
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 152.163.100.195
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 11:56 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The "Mini-Station" was the fore-runner of the "Community Policing" concept. Just because it didn't benefit YOU, does not mean it doesn't benefit the community at-large; regardless of the minion Po-Po's attitude and statements. Those 2 didn't and don't speak for the Police Dept.; it's rules, directives, nor administration, only themselves. But, gotta say .... y'all like that individualistic schitt. It becomes fodder for diatribes!! Go figure ....

Black-atcha .....
Top of pageBottom of page

Dpd_blue
Member
Username: Dpd_blue

Post Number: 138
Registered: 05-2005
Posted From: 67.149.19.111
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 12:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It is the new dept. policy that the victim of car theft must come to the station to file the report. This has helped cut down on the fraudulent reports of car theft. The victim has to fill out an affidavit regarding the theft, that can be used to prodecute them if they are falsely reporting their car stolen.
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 6323
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 66.2.148.252
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 12:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

DPD - From your perspective has the new policy resulted in less claims of auto theft? Seems to be a bonus all the way around for lowering number of reported thefts (although it won't have an impact on insurance) and the time officers spend taking fradulent reports.

I can see it as a major pain for someone whose car is stolen but it seems like it is a very beneficial idea overall.
Top of pageBottom of page

Llyn
Member
Username: Llyn

Post Number: 1338
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 68.61.197.206
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 1:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"The "Mini-Station" was the fore-runner of the "Community Policing" concept. Just because it didn't benefit YOU, does not mean it doesn't benefit the community at-large; regardless of the minion Po-Po's attitude and statements. Those 2 didn't and don't speak for the Police Dept.; it's rules, directives, nor administration, only themselves."

Ras - I'm open to different views on this point. I've never seen the mini-stations as effective, but I'd be interested in an examples or statisitics that suggest otherwise.
Top of pageBottom of page

Dpd_blue
Member
Username: Dpd_blue

Post Number: 139
Registered: 05-2005
Posted From: 68.252.71.233
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 2:13 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It has cut down on false reports. It does require more officer time now. In the past you could report your car stolen by calling 311, and non-sworn personel took your report.
Top of pageBottom of page

Metrodetguy
Member
Username: Metrodetguy

Post Number: 2113
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 70.233.3.143
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 5:17 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Speaking of speaking for yourself...
Top of pageBottom of page

Ghetto_butterfly
Member
Username: Ghetto_butterfly

Post Number: 565
Registered: 09-2004
Posted From: 68.60.139.186
Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2005 - 5:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It makes perfect sense to me to file a stolen vehicle report in person, I can see how it would cut down on fraudulent reports. I have no problem in going there myself. It also makes sense to report it at the precinct station where the incident took place, as it will be the closest place to go anyway. But I'm asking the question of just HOW the mini stations benefit the community, because as Ray mentioned - if you need them, they ain't there. Is it to give the community the perception that there is a police presence? But what good does an unmanned, empty storefront do? We all know that the police exists, but we need to know that they respond if citizens need their assistance. I agree, it would be a waste of police manpower (which is already in shortage) to put an officer in there full-time. And seeing police cruisers out on the streets gives me personally more reassurance than an empty storefront with the words Detroit Police on it.
Top of pageBottom of page

Dpd_blue
Member
Username: Dpd_blue

Post Number: 141
Registered: 05-2005
Posted From: 67.149.19.111
Posted on Sunday, January 01, 2006 - 12:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Personally I see no value in them...officers now have to do their reports on a computer and the mini stations don't have computers. They would make sense if they were treated like satellite precincts were people could come in a have a report taken. right now if you came in, I would have to get your information and then goto the pct. to make your report.
Top of pageBottom of page

Jams
Member
Username: Jams

Post Number: 2454
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 69.219.119.68
Posted on Sunday, January 01, 2006 - 1:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I understand the reasoning for the new policy of reporting auto theft in person, but how does closing down precincts and mini-stations help in this procedure?

I've called several times after observing a break-in to a vehicle belonging to a neighbor or someone I knew. I was told that if I was not the owner, I could not make a report. So, I had to watch a crime in progress or risk my own safety to interfere.

A few years ago, my uncle accepted a teaching position in Europe and left me with his car to drive as I saw fit. It was stolen from in front of my house. I called the report in, which was promptly rejected as it was not my car.

I finally decided to make a last-ditch effort to report the theft. I took the bus to 1300 Beaubien.
The first question, was why are you reporting here? My reply was, it would take me two buses to get to the precinct. They took the report.

My question is, Is it possible for a major City to have an efficient and responsive Police Force?

By no means do I blame those in the streets, for the most part, I've found them extremely concerned about doing the best for the Community,
and are frustrated about not having the tools they need.
Top of pageBottom of page

Irish_mafia
Member
Username: Irish_mafia

Post Number: 295
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 69.221.68.105
Posted on Sunday, January 01, 2006 - 9:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

A number of us found it bizarre that the fifth precinct had been shut down just after the development of the new strip mall across the street and all of the Crosswind homes that are being built behind that mall and down to the river.

I understand KK is dealing with budget cuts, but it does seem to be a rather high-profile boarded up building there on Jefferson.
Top of pageBottom of page

Ghetto_butterfly
Member
Username: Ghetto_butterfly

Post Number: 569
Registered: 09-2004
Posted From: 68.60.139.186
Posted on Sunday, January 01, 2006 - 9:36 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If you're talking about the one on E. Jefferson and St. Jean, you're wrong. It hasn't been shut down, they merely moved to a different location - Gratiot and Gunston, as my friend and I found out under rather painful circumstances.
Top of pageBottom of page

Llyn
Member
Username: Llyn

Post Number: 1345
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 68.61.197.206
Posted on Sunday, January 01, 2006 - 10:49 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

They're regional offices now. Depends on how you look at it. They've combined precincts, so technically it has been shutdown. Or you could say it was combined, but if the precinct office location is shutdown, then...
Top of pageBottom of page

Observant2art
Member
Username: Observant2art

Post Number: 168
Registered: 11-2005
Posted From: 209.104.139.161
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 2:16 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I am not trying to be funny, but I forgot about the Mini stations. I didnt know that they still existed. I think the purpose of the mini stations is that they are police station breakrooms,"Coffee and donuts" anyone?!

(Message edited by observant2art on January 04, 2006)

Add Your Message Here
Posting is currently disabled in this topic. Contact your discussion moderator for more information.