The Division of Operational Support is the part of the St. Louis County Police Department concerned with recruitment and hiring, training, technology, record keeping and security services. The Bureau of Staff Services delivers administrative support services to the Department. The Office of Information and Technology develops and implements technological innovations to assure the most effective and up-to-the-minute law enforcement. The Bureau of Central Police Records maintains all Department law enforcement records, while the Bureau of Security Services provides a safe environment within Government facilities for our citizens and employees in which to visit and work.
Many of these services are available to our partner agencies, through formalized contracts. Those cities contracting with the St. Louis County Police Department through full-service police contracts are automatically afforded all of these services through their contracts. In support of the Department's mission, the bureaus and units of Operational Support are engaged in many initiatives to significantly increase the effectiveness of our employees in the years ahead.
Bureau of Professional Responsibility
Belief in the integrity of Department personnel is absolutely essential for public confidence. The Bureau of Professional Responsibility investigates all complaints against our employees, those from the citizens we serve and ones filed by our own staff when infractions are observed. A Performance Monitoring system provides an "early-warning" network to recommend an employee for guidance, often before more serious problems emerge. (Click this link for information on How to Make a Commendation or Complaint.)
Bureau of Staff Services
The Personnel Services Unit, a part of the Bureau of Staff Services, is the hiring and recruitment wing of the Department. Their mission is to encourage the very best from all walks of life to join and grow with the Department as we serve and protect our community. They recruit, test and select new officers using the highest standards, assuring that only the finest serve as St. Louis County Officers.
Other units of the Bureau of Staff Services include the fiscal and supply units, and the Planning and Analysis Unit which to supports the Department's high level of professionalism by coordinating the written directive systems and by developing effective policy or procedures. Planning and Analysis also provides research for Department decision making and coordinates the Department's certification efforts. In 1998, the St. Louis County Police Department received a Certificate of Accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). This accreditation recognizes the professionalism, efficiency and effectiveness achieved by the St. Louis County Police Department and it has been renewed every three years since then.
St. Louis County and Municipal Police Academy
Maintaining the edge for a police officer means learning and applying the latest investigative techniques or considering recent legal issues on a daily basis. Today's fast paced, complex society demands an officer trained and equipped the moment they 'hit the street' and doesn't stop after they graduate from the Academy.
The St. Louis County and Municipal Academy is recognized as a front-runner in the area of police training. The Project 48 training model developed by the Academy set the education standard for the State's current continuing education requirement. This Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) certified academy continues to exceed the State requirement by providing over 900 hours of intense physically- and mentally-demanding basic recruit police training to our employees and those of municipal departments in St. Louis County. In addition, the Open Enrollment Program affords qualified individuals an opportunity to enter into the field of law enforcement with the same high level of training at a minimal individual cost. Hired before attending, or chosen for Open Enrollment, graduates of the CMPA enter law enforcement with the best preparation for a career of service to their communities.
Office of Information and Technology
Nothing shows how the St. Louis County Police Department leads in the world of law enforcement more than the technological innovations developed and implemented by the Office of Information and Technology. As early as the beginning of the 1970's, the Department leadership recognized the importance of the emerging "information technology." This recognition led to the creation of a special Data Processing Unit, whose staff was dedicated solely to police-related computer system development. This decision on self-reliance and innovative thinking continues to ensure that experienced police personnel design and develop computer systems that meet the unique needs of law enforcement. We installed the first Computer Aided Dispatching (CAD) system in the region and within a year had developed the first generation Computer Assisted Report Entry Record Management System (CARE RMS). CARE has since gone on to receive nationwide recognition in the law enforcement and the computer industry. From these early successes, the Department has expanded its operations from mere "data processing" to the use of state-of-the-art information technology as the core of the Department's law enforcement procedures.
Two of the Office's Bureaus are especially important to the Department's position as an innovator in the field of law enforcement technology: the Bureau of Computer Services and Bureau of Communications. These two bureaus develop and use the newest computer technology available to law enforcement with the goal of providing better and faster service to our citizens. For instance, Computer Aided Dispatching and the successful integration of the multi-jurisdictional Emergency 911 system has greatly reduced the time to locate and send the closest available police unit to an emergency call for service.
The Computer Aided Dispatching (CAD) system relies on the latest in technology and design. A graphic user interface brings mapping and call placement to the dispatcher in seconds - while in-car laptop computers bring Headquarters - and access to extensive information systems right into the front seat of every patrol car. Time and effort spent away from the streets and neighborhoods during preliminary investigations - completing records searches and inquiries - are virtually eliminated by permitting these tasks in the car, keeping our officers closer to the citizens. These laptop computers access criminal records, digitized mug shot photographs and police report files, in addition to calls for service and other administrative files used every day by our officers.
Working in tandem with the CAD system is the nationally-recognized, award-winning Computer Assisted Report Entry (CARE) system, a highly complex computer-based records management system. For more than two decades officers have used CARE to quickly dictate their reports by phone and return to service. Upgrading CARE has moved this database to laptops in any equipped patrol vehicle. This efficiency allows for more effective use of time for investigations, patrol, or other problems that affect the quality of life in our neighborhoods. At the same time, the Department now collects data for crime analysis, used for the efficient redeployment of its officers based on emerging crime trends or patterns.
Reports from these systems are standardized, legible and meet both Federal Uniform Crime Report (UCR) and National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS) reporting guidelines. With this new format, concise records management and detailed crime analysis are just seconds away. Most importantly, CARE is shared technology, developed by the St. Louis County Police Department for police agencies, with no software costs. Personnel costs for report entry and the hardware to install CARE access in individual agencies are the only real expenses.
CrimeMATRIX - The Latest Innovation
Recently, the Bureau of Computer Services rolled out the latest in police technology - CrimeMATRIX. Again at the forefront, this new innovation relies on an extremely complex computer system designed and developed by police personnel working directly for and with the police department. CrimeMATRIX ties together arrest records, police reports, electronic mug shots, handgun permit issuance records, traffic tickets, address history, probation/parole records, sex offender registration and domestic violence databases. These databases are accessed and compared in real time as the system develops the relational "matrix" and provides the officer or detective with a full picture of all available information on a criminal, incident or location. Overlaying these systems with regional GIS mapping puts offenders, vehicles, crimes, property, etc., together so investigators can see across regional boundaries, visualize these relationships and respond immediately. This system has already drawn acclaim and the attention of federal and state law enforcement agencies around the country as they look to this technology and design as a key component in our national Homeland Security Plans.
Central Police Records
The Bureau of Central Police Records, in addition to providing criminal record checks or police reports to the public manages the CARE system, updates sex offender registration information, issues firearm permits and trains and certifies private security personnel working in our community.
Private Security Section
The Private Security Section, along with their counterpart in the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, processes applications, provides training and recertification to more than 10,000 security personnel through a joint Metropolitan license. This program, which standardizes the process and qualifications, authorizes a licensed individual to work in both St. Louis County and the City of St. Louis.