MEMO: NRPD and CSDNR Should Collaborate to Build an iPod Database

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MEMO: NRPD and CSDNR Should Collaborate to Build an iPod Database

May 29, 2009 - 20:52

A0399F4A-E886-4758-8927-FFA9D9B727D1.jpgWith all the talk about "shared services" between school and city officials how about getting the ball rolling with a simple project designed to take a bite out of crime. Let's take a page from the police department in Portsmouth, New Hampshire which is now working with local school officials to create an "iPod registry" as a way to deter theft of mp3 players and similar devices.

The police department in Portsmouth, NH is collaborating with Portsmouth High School to create a database of student iPods (and other MP3 players) in hopes of deterring thieves. The increasingly common occurrence has caused the school's "resource officer" (aka police officer on duty inside the school) to collect information about students' digital audio players, including serial numbers, descriptions, and pictures that are filed away. School officials hope that, with the information readily available, stolen iPods will be easier to recover.

Yeah, I know that iPods are "contraband" at New Rochelle High School but so are cell phones and candy bars so let's get real for a moment here and talk about implementing a low cost program which can help students and lower crime in our schools.

There are 5 Comments

Some students probably wont hand it up to get it scanned for the serial, get pictures taken of it, and a description. There is a way around that when you first register it with he database. Someone can steal an Ipod, then have it registered with the school, and then if the person that got the Ipod stolen from him then he wouldn't be able to get it back. Then the school would get in trouble if the guardian of the child could get the police involved and match the Ipod up to the Itunes that the child that got the Ipod stolen from and if its a match then the school will have big problems.

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Robert Cox's picture

A note to the two commenters.

I do not know what to think of the rather odd notion that a student who steals an iPod would then take that iPod to the police in an attempt to register the iPod in their name. Setting aside the highly unlikely nature of this scenario, the real owner of the iPod could file a criminal complaint based on proof of ownership such as a receipt, registration information or testimony. The student who stole the iPod would be arrested and prosecuted. After the case is resolved the iPod would be returned to the real owner. Given this possibility, I seriously doubt an iPod thief is going to come forward as you have suggested but if they were dumb enough to do as you say the most likely outcome is that a stolen iPod would be returned.

It does not matter whether the New Rochelle school system is set up exactly the same as Portsmouth PD. New Rochelle school security is run by Detective Bruce Danieli (ret.), formerly of NRPD. The NRPD has a Youth Officer and is already involved in the schools through D.A.R.E. The program would be accommodated to the existing system as appropriate.

When you understand that this sort of theft of iPods, cellphone, etc. is commonplace at schools, the value of such a program as both a deterrent and as a way to reunite iPod owners with their iPod is obvious. As the program would be voluntarily, lower crime, save money and ultimately benefit all concerned - less crime means less work for NRPD, lower number of thefts means less VADIR filings, students are protected and/or get their property back.

The D.A.R.E Program is thought in the elementary schools (5th Grade) so maybe there is coverage there.
As far as VADIR filings, I guess the Board of Ed has
the Middle Schools and High School "covered up",
oh I mean covered. LOL.

Actually, there are the two police officers teaching 5th grade DARE and three police officers assigned to the middle schools to teach the 6th graders G.R.E.A.T. (Gang Resistance And Training). So that is at laest five police officers in the schools on a regular basis. They are not considered SRO's (School Resource Officers) though.
Regardless, I don't know if this ipod program would work though. I mean, how many ipods or cell phones get stolen anyway? Is it a big problem in the schools? Are records kept?