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Crime analysis, the second stage of the SARA (scanning, analysis, response, assessment) problem-solving process, represents the heart of the process. Comprehensively analyzing a problem is critical to the success of a problem-solving effort. Effective tailor-made responses cannot be developed unless people know what is causing the problem. Thus, the purpose of analysis is to learn as much as possible about problems in order to identify their causes; officers must gather information from sources inside and outside their agency about the scope, nature, and causes of problems.

Some people describe crime analysis as an art, others as a science, and still others as a discipline. Crime analysis can be any or all of these. Crime analysis is the study of crime trends and patterns, the art of ...

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