• Nenad Milić KPU
  • Dragan Milidragović
Keywords: police intervention, decision making, situational awareness, body-worn cameras, UAVs, GIS


Abstract: Decision-making and discretion in police interventions should be based on relevant and objective information. Complexity, level of risk, unpredictability, and uncertainty are some of the features of police interventions in which police officers need to decide how to act in a few seconds. In limited timeframe, the police officer should find and select all available information relevant to make the decision. Decision-making gets complicated and more challenging in police interventions where there is a risk of police officers getting injured and police use of force. The psychological pressure such situations create can negatively affect officers’ situation awareness or their ability to observe and choose among pieces of information essential for decision making. Consequently, relevant information may not reach the police managers who are expected to react to every change in the situation with an adequate decision.

The problem of loss or lack of situational awareness in complex and risky police interventions has long been noticed. In order to maintain situational awareness during interventions and timely get the necessary information, body-worn cameras, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for live coverage of events from the police intervention scene and geographic information systems (GIS) to integrate data from the field could be used. These technologies allow managers in police headquarters to follow all events during the police intervention "live", to be familiar the deployment and status of engaged resources at all times, notice problems, and accordingly make decisions even before receiving (or in case of delay) information via the radio communication system. Having in mind the importance of situational awareness in complex and risky interventions for decision making, the paper points to the possibilities of using body-worn cameras, UAVs, and GIS to ensure situational awareness during interventions.

Keywords: police intervention, decision making, situational awareness, body-worn cameras, UAVs, GIS.


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Police Organization – Structure and Functioning