Spatial Analysis of Crime Data for Creating New Patrol Beats in Montclair, California

Publication Date


Committee Chair

Karen K. Kemp, Ph.D.

Committee Members

Chair Kevin Piper, Captain, Montclair Police Department
Steven Dague, MS GIS


The Montclair Police Department (MPD) wished to update their patrol beat areas, which were initially laid out 20 years ago. To accomplish this task, tabular Calls-for-Service (CFS) data for the calendar years 2002-2004 were cleaned, organized by month, and georeferenced to existing street shapefiles in the Montclair GIS dataset. Once this was complete, the data was aggregated into the Police Department’s existing Reporting Districts, according to the time spent per call, locations, call priority, time of day, and time of year. A graphical analysis of the temporal patterns of these incidents was turned over to the MPD management, and may be used to revise their shift schedules in the future. The geocoded incidents were then culled to produce a file of incidents considered by the client most pertinent to car patrols. These incidents were then weighted according to client-derived criteria, re-aggregated to the Reporting Districts, and were grouped into revised patrol beats utilizing an external custom-written ArcView extension, Desktop Hypercube. The new patrol beats are considered to more accurately reflect the contemporary priority areas and peak incident times in Montclair. The project has been fully documented, and a summary of the analysis models utilized is provided, with an eye towards possible applications of this workflow in similar situations in other cities.

Full text is available at the University of Redlands


Article Location