Arizona is the latest to begin using pre-crime models to supposedly thwart attacks by those who are “near the breaking point.” The video below highlights how mental health police units look to harvest everything from medical records to gun purchases to online posts. Citing the crimes of Jared Loughner and Elliot Rodger, these units are being given the green light with new legislation to involuntarily detain those who are flagged.
It’s becoming a trend that is taking various forms. In Chicago, a “Heat List” has gone into effect that has indexed approximately 400 people who have been identified by a computer algorithm as being future threats to commit violent crime. Without having actually committed a crime, some of those on the list are beginning to get visits from Chicago police warning them that they are already being watched.
In California, a sociologist at the University of California, Riverside has been working with the Indio Police Department to offer a computer dragnet that can predict where burglaries are going to happen in the future. Prof. Robert Nash Parker has developed a “computer model that predicts, by census block group, where burglaries are likely to occur.” Notably, Indio only has a population of 75,000, indicating that populations large and small are increasingly being subsumed into the emerging Minority Report world of modern policing.