Identifying Report Writing Trends 1
Law enforcement is now able to communicate easier and faster with the use of computers and other artificial intelligence devices. Since 1979, police officers have had computers in their vehicles, which allows them to search databases. With technology rapidly evolving, police officers have instant access to dispatchers, police records, and other critical data. This allows for the officers to communicate information quickly and efficiently. The advancement of technology also enhances safety, response times, how information is being collected, and how information is being distributed between law enforcement organizations. Law enforcement report writing is beginning to advance with the use of technology. Many law enforcement agencies including the FBI are beginning to use artificial intelligence and machine learning to collect information, write reports, and search for reports or information. Law enforcement agencies are using less paper to complete reports and are using computers and other devices such as tablets to complete reports. One such example is an auto-populated forms allows access for all forms related to an officer's report. When using an auto-populated form, the officer completes the face page of the report, and the information will be automatically applied to the rest of the report. Aside from the convenience of using auto- population in report writing, law enforcement can use technology to quickly search for and complete the specific report form they need. These reports can easily be tied into records management. This is a major advancement because it makes sharing the report between officers, agencies, and the courts faster and enhances organization. The advancement of technology for recording devices has also been helpful with how reports are completed. Prior to having these devices law enforcement had to rely on paper and mental notes to complete all 2
their reports. Voice dictation and video analysis will also likely continue to be developed and more widely used. This is because voice and video recording give officers full and accurate details to complete their report. The development of the technology software that law enforcement uses will continue to enhance report writing capabilities. Being able to take pictures of a paper reports and upload them to a computer to have a digital archive of reports will make searching for information easier and less time consuming. After a paper report has been digitized it can also be tagged and attached to another file if they are connected. As technology continues to develop it will also continue to impact how criminal justice reports will be written and used. In the future law enforcement report writing is likely to continue minimizing the use of paper forms and encouraging completing reports on computers or other devices. The development of technology for law enforcement will continue to save time, promote productivity, and be cost efficient when compared to standard report writing in the past. 3
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