Manpower needs are always an issue for a police department. There are always more needs than officers.

Manpower needs are always an issue for a police department. There are always more needs than officers. Independence Police Department has begun several initiatives to stretch the manpower as well as it can be, but also address problems based on intelligence, analysis, and staff planning.  

This is the basis for “intelligence led policing.” Theft at any retail outlet is a concern everywhere and cost all of us money as prices of items are raised to cover the loss of the theft. Shopping centers are often targeted by professional thieves who make their living stealing items to be sold pennies on the dollar.

On a regular basis, members of the Independence Police Department work with merchants in the area of 39th Street and M-291 to combat such thieves in a planned way that gets the most out of everyone’s limited resources. Stores move plain clothes security personnel from other sites to the Independence stores to augment existing staff in watching for theft. The police department also shifts officers to the assignment, with the majority being in plain clothes. Intelligence and planning by staff help select the day of the week and hours that will be the most successful. The target is professional thieves. In the beginning, large number of arrest occurred, but as this effort has continued, the numbers have grown smaller.  Despite the numbers growing smaller, diligence requires these efforts of the community and their police to continue.

On Thursday, April 22, 2010, such an operation occurred. Police officers and private security personnel from various businesses were shifted from other assignments. The majority were in plain clothes, with uniformed officers in the area to handle the arrests.  The efforts in the afternoon and evening resulted in:

Five adults were arrested for stealing.


Two adults were arrested for receiving stolen property.


 Seven individuals were arrested on existing bench warrants.


 Two adults were arrested for endangering the welfare of a child.


 One adult was arrested for aiding in the commission of a misdemeanor crime.


 Five juveniles were arrested for stealing.


 Five traffic summons’ were issued.


 One adult was arrested on charges of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, as the officer was injured in the arrest and required surgery.


 A total of $991.30 worth of stolen merchandise was returned to the victim stores.

The anti-shoplift detail is one of the many successful initiatives the Independence Police Department utilizes in the overall crime reduction effort, which has shown to be very effective. In 2009, a year when the national and local part I crime trends increased, the city of Independence experienced an 11 percent rate of decrease in part I crimes.

In addition to the crime reduction initiatives and proactive efforts IPD utilizes, another key to the success of crime reduction in Independence is the tremendous citizen/police crime reduction partnership.  Programs such as Neighborhood Watch, Volunteers in Police Service and Crime Free Multi-housing contribute to the success of crime reduction in no small measure.