Monday, October 17, 2005

Do Index Numbers Serve a Purpose?

Back in the day, there were these things called "index numbers." They consisted of statistics tracked to kind of see how much production Commanders could squeeze out of their people. As we understood it, index numbers consisted of parkers, hazardous movers, school absentees for days and curfews for nights. It may or may not have included Part One arrests (some of the saltier vets can enlighten the rest of us as we are only slightly salty.)

The object of these numbers is of course a subterfuge to a quota system. The department has spent years and years denying there was a quota system, but everyone knew that if you produced a lot of "index" numbers, you got better evaluations, better start times, steadier cars and partners. The trouble with the system is that every year, at the accountability meetings, the powers that be demanded somewhere between a 3 to 5% increase in the index baseline numbers. In the face of declining criminal activity, you can't maintain a 3-5% increase without resorting to ... well, you get the idea.

So the question is - how does one track, grade and evaluate officer productivity nowadays? The rating cards have been out of existence for almost four years and they were a BS system anyway (way to much hanky panky and hanky spanky going on there - ask your local vets about that boys and girls.) No one seems able to maintain any sort of reasonably designed database to track activity and even if they could, they can't discipline officers who don't generate activity as there are no penalties built into the system (ain't civil service grand? You don't produce and there's no penalty for not producing!) Any ideas, stories or suggestions?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do not think that there will ever be any type of system to track this type of info. The major reason would be that then everyone would know exactly how much work is NOT done by a good number of people in this department. Then if that info where to get out all hell would break lose and for what? There is no way the department can then discipline the great number of people who do nothing. Another problem that could be seen is that you have some great cops who bust their ass day in and day out for nothing more than they want to work and of course get some court time here and there. After some time of doing this it becomes time to slow it down and relax a little. Spend more time with the family and kids instead of in court. Is it fair to then look at their stats and then call them dogs? They put their time in and should not be fucked with. With out having a "system" now even the bad bosses should have a few brain cells to know who works and who does not, they are the ones approving the arrest reports, and they should treat those people well.

10/17/2005 12:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They already put a new system into place. In the personnel system, after you log on, there is an officer activity menu link. It has parkers, movers, , cta checks, anovs, etc. It also counts awards, medical days, days on the street, etc. If you want to know exactly what the department cares about, see the PDSO that lists all the activity numbers tracked for an officer. It's one of the department automation orders that came out a couple of years ago. If you read that, it appears that they plan on having a computer generated efficiency number eventually.

10/17/2005 12:47:00 PM  
Anonymous NorthSide said...

I'm retired.

I couldn't give a rat's ass how many parkers, movers, curfews, disorderlies and school absentees an officer has issued. It's essentially bullshit.
I believe that they should hire more disabled folks and meter maids to write parkers.

Among other factors, certainly a "boss" who has "paid (his/her) dues" as "the REAL PO-leese" commands my RESPECT, even if s/he is an asshole otherwise. Give the devil his due.

Conversely, if a "boss" has never had a period of years in his career where he's amassed a serious number of felony arrests incidents, who the fuck is s/he to tell me how to do my job?

When all is said and done, I believe the most defining indicator of RESPECT is that during a time in the officer's career, s/he made constant Part I FELONY arrests. You can include UUW's rather than "holding (felony) shoplifter" runs.

Also, INCIDENTS are more significant than sheer numbers. In an "on-view" arrest in a stolen auto, score ONE regardless of the number of occupants.

Just because someone was merely assigned to 011, 007, etc., he does not necessarily make the cut. There are officers in outlying districts that have locked up more felons per year than desk personnel, lock-up keepers and yes--dog asses in such "fast" units.

The CPD will never have a ribbon bar award for officers who have amassed say, fifty FELONY arrests/incidents in a year. Why? Because very few "bosses" would have earned such an honor.

Once an officer has "paid his dues", I can respect him even if he's now sitting around at HQ as an administrator.

In my humble opinion, every officer worthy of a leadership position should have "paid his dues" earlier in his career.

10/17/2005 02:12:00 PM  
Anonymous englewood ranger said...

Right on, Sarge!

10/17/2005 02:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As the saying goes, 20% of the officers do 80% of the police work.
Yet the other 80% get the same paycheck.

10/17/2005 02:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, for the Officers who don't bother to make self-initiated arrests, they should generate some sort of activity to prove their existence. For Christ's sake, I'm tired of hearing coppers whine about writing traffic tickets because they don't want to go to traffic court. I'll agree it's a hassle, but come's ONCE A FUCKING MONTH! Your making what? $45-$60K a year? You can't make it downtown to milk the city for another three hours to go to traffic court? Bullshit, laziness. I only have under ten years on, and when I got on it was the "one a day" policy. You wanted a steady car you wrote a mover and a couple parkers a day (per Officer). Nowadays these coppers get what they want, i.e. the early start, a steady car, a steady partner, time due when they want it, never bitched at for being late, and what do they give in return? 30 minutes of bullshit foot patrol? LAZINESS. There is more to this job than just answering the radio, if you are taken care of you should give the person that is taking care of you some respect and generate some activity.....WITHOUT BEING ASKED. And if not, it lies with the decisions of the W/C to start making changes, e.g. bouncing the dog asses off the cars to make room for the people who want to do something out there. Too many pre-madonna cry babies out there these days. And anyone getting pissed at me for writing this....well, you are probably the one that this is addressed to.

10/17/2005 03:06:00 PM  
Anonymous mr. fillmore said...

how about extra pay for street coppers in the worst districts. you want more $$$, bid in.

10/17/2005 03:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Northside, I always appreciate the amount of intelligence and civility you bring to the discussion (in a blog otherwise seemingly devoted to slandering other officers.) However, those qualities are what command my respect, not how many felony arrests that you have made. I don't need to know anyone's history unless I am actively trying to get laid. You don't have to respect your supervisor, if fact, in most cases, I don't. Ignore them, tell them to beat it. It usually leaves them speechless. Also, I no longer operate on the basis that I am doing a good job for this city. I am only a number to them. So are you. I do a good job because I take pride in my own work. How many of my fellow officers did I help today? Did I help that old lady with a flat tire? Did I make sure as many kids as possible made it home from school safely? Did I lock up a sex offender? Those are the things I take pride in. That is my index. And if I don't accomplish one of those things and my partner and I still make it home safely to our families, we still win. Any other index to me is silly.

10/17/2005 03:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Filmore,
The issue that comes from offering "premium" pay for working in fast districts is that the money attracts dogs. That's not fair to anyone at all because while the dog is hiding his ass or dogging out a job, the workers have to pick up the slack. The dog and the worker get the same check with the premium. Stop thinking like a liberal democrat by throwing money at a problem. Only when true accountability comes to light will a majority of the dogs and their habits will be euthanized.

10/17/2005 03:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yea go out there and work and maybe the Superintendent can go hug a Reverend on your behalf. I used to be a workin copper. However not anymore. Not until we get a real mayor and start acting like a real Police department will I do anything more than whats assigned to me.

10/17/2005 04:23:00 PM  
Anonymous NorthSide said...

3:30:23 PM

We may well be on the same page.

I presume that any good police officer would back up his fellow officers, aid anyone in distress, certainly the elderly, disabled and children. A police officer should be a role model for society in general. I agree.

However, in an department where many of the "bosses" are either political hacks, suckholes, incompetents, mentally dull and even sociopathic or combinations thereof, I say that there should be an OBJECTIVE litmus test to measure those that have indeed "paid their dues". I am merely declaring that the real workers (i.e.: Part I felony arrests) should not be denied advancement for a lack of patronage or "clout". There are those, myself included, that find "sucking up" repulsive and beneath their dignity. Their actions alone should make a compelling argument for exemplary leadership qualities.

Certainly there are other factors which are difficult, if not impossible to quantify. However, if politically corrupt management can deny our most obviously effective police officers advancement without leaving a detailed and possibly damning paper trail to justify their actions, meaningful reform is all but impossible.

What better OBJECTIVE measure of an officer's contributions to our mission than a prolific history of Part I FELONY arrests for a substantive period of the officer's career.

While I might find a "boss" is "a nice person", even likable, I have little on no respect for that "boss" that has never "paid his dues" as a REAL POLICE OFFICER.

10/17/2005 04:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get rid of the TRU, put them back into the districts, beef up the in-house tact/gang teams to work on their own "in-district" problems, also beefing up patrol. By doing this the officers on the street will be able to get more time due availabilty and the "city" can have more police on the street and not in the ghetto. Too much free police service in the ghetto and not enough for the tax payers

10/17/2005 04:55:00 PM  
Anonymous patrol sgt./ex-dick said...

Why is it that most of the supervisors transferred into the Detective Division have never even served as detectives?

This is a kick in the groin to every supervisor who has ever served with distinction in the Detective Division.

10/17/2005 05:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Northside, well put. However, because one is an excellent "real" police officer doesn't mean that he would make a top flight supervisor. If he is so good at making Part 1 arrests, why would I want to promote him and reduce his productivity? I am not saying that "real" coppers can't make great supervisors, they certainly can. The system for grading individuals seems to be at issue here, and you have a valid point. But clout and political appointments are not indigenous to CPD, we are merely a microcosm of society. Everyone here can complain but that is all this is. The leadership of the FOP and of CPD have to be looked at closely. I believe that everytime they promote one of these big bosses to supt. and dept. supt. that you are stirring the pot with the same dirty spoon. Go outside this department and you will find new ideas. And I don't necessarily believe the leader has to be a former police officer. Any top flight CEO would be better than what we have had to swallow for so long. Same for the FOP. Congrats to everyone for making this a slander free post. This type of exchange from people who obviously care is so much more useful than the other nonsense posted here on a daily basis.

10/17/2005 05:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you say part I felony arrest again i'm gonna scream, get off your high horse already.

10/17/2005 05:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Bleed Blue said...

"Glory....Honor...a Jedi craves not these things.." - Yoda

I most heartily agree with what you are saying. The hard workers should get moved up. Unfortunately, that leaves less real police to train the newbies. Some of the best cops I know have turned down promotions and moves on to "better things" in order to stay in patrol and teach the young 'uns how to do the job.
The concept of allowing people to decide they want to be a FTO just for the money is assinine. I know of one guy in 10 who has to call a Sgt to find out which hand to wipe his ass with.

I wish someone with a voice had a better method.

10/17/2005 05:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

tell them to beat it? ok hard ass. tell me where you work so i never end up there and have to tell my supervisor to beat it. you sound a little bitter....having trouble getting promoted? let me guess, you're one of those guys who doesn't want to get promoted, so you never take a test? try studying.

10/17/2005 05:36:00 PM  
Anonymous part 1 felony arrests said...

5:21:46 PM


SCREAM elsewhere!

10/17/2005 06:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


for chirst sake, if you think that phrase means anything you are stupid. it doesn't. retired or not, you may use the thesaurus and web proficiently but have no grasp on reality.

please civilians, take up golf and leave this to us

10/17/2005 07:06:00 PM  
Anonymous northside said...

Referring to the promotional "process", anonymous at 5:36;38 PM writes:

"try studying"

As if the "process" was based on actual merit rather than clout. No, you "let me guess", asshole!

I know of officers who would score above the 99th percentile in any LEGITIMATE test the City could give. Yet, they face insurmountable obstacles in advancing in their profession because they neither have nor seek to have CLOUT.

Fuck you, "boss"!

Keep your knee pads and your lobster bib, you sanctimonious hypocrite.

TO: 7:06:38 PM

By YOUR definition, consider me "STUPID"...and damn proud of it.

10/17/2005 07:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This site is on the world wide web. That means anybody can come on this site read a thread and post a comment. Its not a restricted site. So go ahead and bash each other, it is hilarious

10/17/2005 07:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10/17/2005 07:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


stupid indeed. it's guys like you, bitter with the system, that chew everyone's ear off about how messed up management is. and all you do is trash talk and back stab, ball-less to say anything to someone's face. bitter cause you believe that nobody gets promoted unless they know someone. you're silly. pull the pin and retire already, please. or study and go to school.... the city pays for it even!

10/17/2005 07:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

northside said...
Referring to the promotional "process", anonymous at 5:36;38 PM writes:..........................

TO: 7:06:38 PM

By YOUR definition, consider me "STUPID"...and damn proud of it.

PLEASE NORTHSIDE........ TAKE UP GOLF.......get out of the house, get active. You will suffer from numerous maladies if you do not.
Retirement should not be spent sitting in front of a PC waiting for cops attention.

10/17/2005 07:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, most of us leave the Academy hoping to make a difference.
The courts, the witnesses, other officers, supervisors,policy, promotional events etc (in no particular order) soon knock the spunk out of most of us.

90 % want or wanted to do the right thing. Sometines though it gets really hard to do so

It pains me to see some of the comments we write about each other here yet we fly through intersections to help at a 10-1

Due to the unpredictable nature of police work and the political factors of the job, Ive learned not to judge others until Ive walked in their shoes

We are humans charged with the super human task of doing the Lord's work

Ive found the job to be like a board game We start at the Academy and try to make it to the pension board. On the way there are plenty of lions and tigers and bears trying to hurt us

I wish us all happy safe fun careers landing safely at the pension bd as quickly as possible

10/17/2005 07:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having been in supervision, will someone kindly explain Paid Their Dues? Had a PO once tell me that he finally got a desk job, for he paid his dues. Say what! 3 years on the Job?

10/17/2005 07:51:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Do Index Numbers Serve a Purpose?"

"Had a PO once tell me that he finally got a desk job, for he paid his dues. Say what! 3 years on the Job?"

northern thinks it does, so it must............fuckin retard, i mean retired

10/17/2005 07:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

im surfing back to porn, it's more interesting than a bunch of whining cops

10/17/2005 07:58:00 PM  
Anonymous "stupid and bitter" said...

7:34:25 PM

I'm already retired (Thank God).

If you or anyone else has a problem with my statements on this blog site, contact me via eMail at

Then, if you prefer, I will look at you, eyeball-to-eyeball, and repeat God's TRUTH about the most dysfunctional major PD in the USA.

For your homework, go to a law library and read "Northen v. City of Chicago, et al" (126 F.3d 1024)

Time to alternate between the Colts-Rams and the Cards-Astros.

10/17/2005 08:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you are retired then i have to say thanks for handing off such a f%&^ed up department. why didnt you change it when you had the chance?

10/17/2005 08:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

northside sure tried to change it

10/17/2005 08:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sgt. Northside:

Active officers are in a Catch 22 situation. Either we bite our tongues and shut up or else the dept. makes our life miserable. I hope more retired officers will come forward, use their real names and tell the truth.

I spent my first years working the Deuce locking up wagon loads of bad guys. So what? Aside from pride and personal satisfaction, what's the point?

Morale does not exist.

10/17/2005 09:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

index = revenue for dept. They can count on the cash flow, that is why there is one. Botom Line figure it out!

10/17/2005 10:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NORTHSIDE ROCKS-----the boat!

10/17/2005 10:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Think a lazy copper in 016 cares about activity? No its the two years wonders bustin their asses in ghetto districts.....

10/17/2005 11:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

points are points.........

10/17/2005 11:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bring back the point system that they had in Gangs.

10/17/2005 11:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Northern, your a loose cannon just stirring up trouble. Why don't you just enjoy your retirement and mind your own business. This board is for active police officers.

10/17/2005 11:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

7:34:25 PM
I would just like to point out, sir, that you were the one who used the word "stupid" first...I just happened to agree. I agree whole heartedly with you that this dept. is fucked....and i would venture to say that it's because of so many clout heavy do-nothings that have been given a hand shake and a gold star. IT IS A JOKE. But to say that everyone who is promoted made a phone call is ridiculous. Maybe in your time, but not in this time. I think it's a little sad that you are retired and still so consumed over whatever happened to you. Do you believe that you were owed a promotion? Whatever the case, get over it....enjoy your retirement....stop obsessing about the are out of the loop whether you like it or not.

10/18/2005 12:01:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to 11:56

this board is for everyone that has an internet connection

10/18/2005 12:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Citizen Northside said...

Whatever you say, (11:56 PM) "boss". You da man!

If you check the archives and based on extrapolation and the legitimate components from the paper trail of EXAMSCAM, I estimate that a quarter to a third of promotions are based on ACTUAL MERIT (versus CPD "merit").

I cited Lt. John Farrell and two unnamed current deputy chiefs as being among the legitimate, indeed well-deserved promotions.

This still leaves the overwhelming majority of promotions as FRAUDULENT.

In most cases, it's too late to bestow silver bars upon the victims of the worst major police promotion scandal in the nation's history. In fact, the taxpayers were the biggest losers.

At least two of the victims who remain active were since promoted to exempt positions, no thanks to the dastardly LeRoy Martin and his henchmen.

However, as I have previously stated, perhaps with the intervention of Brennan, Shakman and Patrick Fitzgerald, there will be hope for the talented young men and women who have to endure the City's chicanery and conspiracies in silence.

As another poster noted a while back, what you describe as an "OBSESSION" might be more accurately described as relentless and dogged TENACITY.

I commend your candor in acknowledging that a catastrophic morale problem exists.

10/18/2005 01:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

catastrophic? little harsh for someone who is not even on the job anymore.....beat it.

10/18/2005 02:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

John it's time to give up the GHOST! Your time has come and gone. GET A LIFE!

10/18/2005 06:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While he does seem to be obsessed with this, so what? If thats what he wants to do with his time, let him. He's the victim here. And as far as I'm concerned being retired doesn't mean a damn thing, he's still one of us. One a Marine, always a Marine. Once a Chicago Police Officer, always a Chicago Police Officer. Man, I've been doing this for 25 years, do you think that when I retire I'm going to block out, forget about or not define my identity as being a Chicago Police Officer? Johns one of us, one of the good guys. Show a little respect.

10/18/2005 07:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I spent five years as a supervisor at McDonalds and had to deal with the minions below me and I was a fair and just leader, never was putting the fry guy aheadof the shake girl. Maybe CPD needs to teach the Sgts. and Lts. how to be true leaders and promote the best qualified.

10/18/2005 08:35:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Between my partner and I , morale is up. We really don't care about the other dog asses because their laziness makes us shine. A lot of coppers forget what they are supposed to be here for. I really don't complain- our troops in Iraq, Afghanistan don't bitch and whine like a lot of coppers do---and they don't even make half the money that we make. I am grateful that I have a job. Yeah, it sucks that a lot- not all of those guys get to those "units" by means of phone calls, but I don't let it bother me .Or at least I'm not gonna be misearable about it- I have better things to think about. My partner and I bust our asses and hope that someday people will see that.We back anybody up, take care of our jobs, and lock up these shitheads and get court for it. We make it a point not to give shitheads breaks--- and treat the average working person well. To me going home to see my family, getting my partner home, and bringing in the check is enough.

10/18/2005 09:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

nice try, boss

10/18/2005 09:26:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

post 9:47, I bet when you retire your present and future life won't be guided by a wrong, percieved or otherwise, that happened over a decade ago. And to those that did not have to suffer Northern when, he was in his mind "the greatest copper ever", I will show respect to those who deserve it, and he doesn't.

10/18/2005 09:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why? Care to elaborate, anonymous?

10/18/2005 09:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Put nothing past those that benefit from clout. With no shame, they will even try to attack the outstanding reputation and integrity of a retired copper who is just telling the truth.

We've got your back, northside.

10/18/2005 10:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Face it: Many of the felony arrests made by beat personnel occur just because they were the unit who got the assignment.

Bosses( which I was before I retired) see the ATTITUDE of officers towards the job, and get a better impression from those with a good attitude than from those who constantly beef about the job, avoid work, complain about the lack of overtime(you can get OT if you work at it), and in general, make life annoying for the workers around them. If they don't like the job, let them quit, go into the world, and find a job that pays as much as this, with the benefits attached.

We should be proud of our profession. Without us, anarchy would rule.

10/18/2005 01:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a sgt. in district patrol. During my time as a detective, my partner and I exceled at our job.
Our favorite challenge was unsolved homicide cases. I don't use my name out of modesty. We were really good at our job. We always made time to help the new detectives master skills.

With no accountability from the bosses, how do I return as a dick supv.
I'd rather spend time with my family than suck up to bosses off duty. Another sgt. commented on the same problem. Instead of taking former detectives back, they usually pick guys with no prior investigative experience. If they had a detective grade set-up like New York, I would never even take a sgt. test.
Aside from playing politics, any advice?

10/18/2005 01:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The retired boss neglects to include the fact that MOST felony arrests, shoplifting excluded, result from on-view situations, street stops and responding to in-progress calls. The most active officers get plenty of overtime from just going to court on the arrests and nobody can say that they try to avoid work.

Do you have a BAD ATTITUDE towards the working police? Is not excellence rather that clout part of professionalism?

10/18/2005 02:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

how about felony pinches from flash messages. the dogasses ignore them.

10/18/2005 02:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If 1:21 is really a retired boss, why doesn't he use his name like Northside does?. When you use your name, it makes your comment more beleivable.

10/18/2005 02:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are we all talking about the same Department here ??



I consider my self a worker. I am by no means the best cop. There are many days were I'm downright aweful and couldnt find shit in a CHA stairwell!

But we all know the game here. "They" dont care about making arrests or parkers or whatever.

It's all about the money. Leadership?? That's a class in the academy, not some thing you need as a supervisor. Would it be nice to make $120k like a Dep Chf? Hell ya.

I cant wait for the Det classes to start!!!!! I already know who #1 and #2 are. What a joke! I wish some one told ME they were handing out the answers! I would have bought some too!

An you thought 50% clearence rates were good.........................................................................................................................................

10/18/2005 03:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, can someone please explain to me how Marlene Lorich (sp?) scored #2 on the detective test and she can't fill out a case report and doesn't do jack shit on the a/3 gun team except inventories? If anyone who works there can verify - just how many guns is she responsible for recovering in the time she has been on the team?

10/18/2005 03:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guns?? She can't even find the dogs that are supposed to be in the house!

10/18/2005 05:06:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

New web site to report political patronage in the city:

10/19/2005 08:17:00 AM  

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