Record snowfall helps cops freeze crime rates
Across the Northern Tier especially, agencies have been able to make big budget cuts with the addition of "SnoCops"
Record snowfalls and low temperatures extending into spring have had a hand in lowering crime rates across the northern part of United States as opportunistic departments have seized on the latest law enforcement trend: snow sculptures fashioned after police officers and Chevy Blazers.
The SnoCops program capitalizes on the fact that a police presence — any police presence — lowers criminal behavior. The program was created by an unnamed police chief, who determined that for the cost of food coloring, the time of a snow sculpture and snow moving, lifelike law enforcement figures and cars can be created in areas identified as high crime areas.
The strategy has proven effective and crime rates have fallen, a boon for departments experiencing personnel shortages due to budget cutbacks and layoffs.
However, there has been an increase in citizen complaints regarding officers' “coldness” and perceived indifference when approached by citizens with problems.
Chiefs expect crime rates to continue stay low until about April 1 when temperatures are likely to rise and departments will have to transition to far less convincing and more two-dimensional ‘Fathead’ officers.