Does the City Have Enough Police Officers?

Use this searchable database on Patch to see how Muskego compares with others around the state.

When it comes to how many police officers a community should have, is there a  right number?

While Muskego Police Chief Paul Geiszler has stated that his department has been short-staffed, there are no federal or state—or even local—mandates for how many officers provide optimal protection and service. The International Association of Chiefs of Police in a recent patrol staffing and deployment study states plainly:

"Ready-made, universally applicable patrol staffing standards do not exist. Ratios, such as officers-per-thousand population, are totally inappropriate as a basis for staffing decisions."

Instead, the study says needs should be determined by a number of different factors, including:

  • Priorities
  • Number of calls for service
  • Population size, density and composition
  • Citizen demands for protective services
  • Municipal resources

Muskego employs a total of 47, with 37 of those being officers, so for a population of slightly more than 24,000, that's about 1.5 officers for every thousand residents.

So, how does Muskego stack up against other communities in Wisconsin? Use this handy database to find out.

Data is from the Federal Bureau of Investigation's annual Crime in the United States report, which incorporates information reported to the FBI by law enforcement agencies. This report covers 2011.

Quietwood Guy December 03, 2012 at 08:32 PM
For the nerdy, I find this fascinating. Inherently, you would think there is a pattern that determines size of police force. Pure population is definitely the main factor. Using the officer/thousand removes pure population from the reasons. The results are pretty different with ranges from .34 to 3.12. I would have thought as population gets larger the amount of calls, police involvement would get more predictable, which would then allow you to more accurately staff police people for fuller utilization. Not true as Milwaukee is 3.12, Green Bay is 2.21, Madison is 1.91, Racine 2.25, Janesville is 1.6 and some small towns like Mayville is 1.35, Brillion is 2.21, and Freedom is .34. In my small sampling it appears more population equates to a higher police/thousand. That could be due to the noted problem of putting people in a tight space just causes more conflict eventually causing more police involvement. Is it a geographic pattern? I tested East-West and North-South and my small sampling shoes no notable differences. I couldn't even begin to look at demographic patterns because the data isn't available. Is it an economic pattern? More income means you lavish police budget in budgets? Not really, Racine 20K income 2.2 police, Kaukana 25K income 1.6 police; Fox Point 59K income, 2.53 police; Shorewood 38K, 1.8 police. All close sized but income is different and there is little pattern. Little patterns means humans influence the decisions. Fascinating!
Denise Konkol December 04, 2012 at 03:20 AM
I was also amazed to find out that population alone does not drive nor require a minimum ratio.
Dozer December 08, 2012 at 09:43 PM
Speaking of the amount of officers on duty, what is the status of Officer Chad Dornbach who was alledgedly drunk and accused of domestic abuse. Is he on paid leave or have the charges been dismissed? Just an interested tax payer !


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