Just outside of New York’s most iconic city, Manhattan, there are two popular and well-known county’s, the Bronx, and Westchester. The two-bordering county’s, Manhattan and the Bronx, otherwise known as boroughs of New York City, is home to a variety of races and ethnicities, as well as significant variance in age groups. Similar to Westchester County, which is not considered part of the five boroughs of New York City in general, it is referred to as ‘just outside New York City.’ The specific focus of this project is to identify why there is such a high rate of Hispanic or Latino juveniles arrested for various crimes or criminal offenses in the Bronx versus the number of white juveniles arrested in Westchester County. Data from the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services,* in addition to data from Office of Justice Research and Performance, provides several statistics as well as data on the processing stages that juveniles undergo after being arrested. When looking at the data from the two separate counties of New York, and able to identify statistics from 2014, all the way up to the year 2018. Upon further inspection of the data provided from both locations, the Bronx and Westchester counties that border one another share a tremendous difference in their data. More specifically, when attempting to review this data, it becomes challenging to identify the similarities and differences among the type of arrests these juveniles were charged with from the opposing counties. As shown in the data set provided below, the county populations, race, and ethnicity are specified in both Westchester County and the Bronx. On the one hand, when trying to examine what the types of arrests were for both counties, only one is deemed as reliable and accurate, which is Westchester’s data. On the other hand, the Bronx does not have this data available, leaving data points blank and unreadable. The reason for this can be blamed on the NYPD’s criminal justice agency leaving out or purposely manipulating data involving crimes committed by juveniles.(1) This type of data is known as ‘dirty data,’ this issue of not including or being able to refer to data can have repercussions for future criminal investigation or criminal justice agencies that use predictive policing to help stop a crime before it happens. (1) Attempting to compare two counties becomes impossible with missing or manipulated data, which can ultimately cause a more substantial scaled effect on the placement of surveillance systems that are placed throughout communities that the data is missing from. Further oppressing over-policed locations with extensive surveillance systems. (2)
The significance of this story is to identify that these two counties are unable to be compared based on their crime statistics and the fact that the NYPD can be blamed for having manipulated or missing data on these juvenile profiles. It is interesting to note that Westchester’s information is available to read and decode while the Bronx is left with blank spaces. Why is this the case in one of the New York Cities most populated county’s? The answer lies within the corruption of criminal justice agencies that use predictive policing systems to target neighborhoods that are typically associated with oppressed groups of society. In this case, Hispanics and Latinos face the most amount of juvenile arrests in the Bronx, while Westchester primarily has a more substantial amount of white juvenile arrests.
Further leading to the placement of surveillance systems in these communities to only further oppress groups of people. Children from ages seven to fifteen are arrested and placed into detention facilities, but yet the public is unable to see just how many-faced specific charges. Not knowing how many juveniles are processed each year could lead to further oppression of juveniles in the Bronx versus those that live in Westchester. Different in both size and population, they are not far from one another or my homemaking this project relevant to the areas I move through or have experienced for most of my life. It brings forward the corrupt police presents and activity that decides the fate of juvenile’s futures.
It is evident that the information gathered from NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services, as well as the Office of Justice Research and Performance, is considered to produce missing or dirty data for the Bronx County Juvenile Profiles. This refers to,
“missing data, wrong data… or data that has been intentionally manipulated or “juked,” as well as data that is distorted by individual and societal biases.” (1)
Leaving out key information about what types of charges based on arrests the juveniles will face in the Bronx can lead to further manipulated or missing data. The provided data is incalculable. Incomparable to the acquired data from Westchester County’s juvenile profiles which expresses much less corruption in their juvenile justice profiling data, unlike the Bronx. It can be because of targeted communities in the Bronx that are faced with corrupted data used in predictive policing systems that have created extensive patrol of areas based on crime rate statistics. These statistics are the ones that are being referred to like juvenile profile statistics. The data is then imputed to predictive policing systems which use police data crime statistics to map out high crime locations and results in having more police presents where is crime is considered to take place.(1) Based on the Bronx county data, there are more arrests in general and also more arrests of those that identify as Hispanic and Latino. Expressing that predictive policing systems target those that identify with the most popular ethnicity in the Bronx and are the ones arrested between the ages seven to fifteen in such high quantities each year.
Incomparable to the acquired data from the neighboring Westchester County’s juvenile profiles which expresses much less corruption in their juvenile justice profiling data, unlike the Bronx. It can be because of targeted communities in the Bronx that are faced with corrupted data used in predictive policing systems that have created extensive patrol of areas based on crime rate statistics. These statistics are the ones that are being referred to like juvenile profile statistics. The data is then imputed to predictive policing systems which use police data crime statistics to map out high crime locations and results in having more police presents where is crime is considered to take place.(1) Based on the Bronx county data, there are more arrests in general and also more arrests of those that identify as Hispanic and Latino. Expressing that predictive policing systems target those that identify with the most popular ethnicity in the Bronx and are the ones arrested between the ages seven to fifteen in such high quantities each year.
With the use of technology that allows police to be present without being physically present is forming a new age of surveillance, we have entered society. The ability to patrol and monitor specific neighborhoods and areas that are associated as being high in crime allows the police to watch or monitor people without them even knowing. More specifically, Closed Circuit TV is being used to identify potential criminals based on facial recognition and make citizens feel safer in their city.(2) Although police surveillance is an attempt to prevent high crime rates in certain locations it is interesting to note that these systems also have the ability to oppress communities that are already over policed based on predictive policing systems. Police agencies using this surveillance in a way to experiment on how to handle high crime rates. The Tampa Smart “CCTV” Experiment identifies how police surveillance systems are an experimental attempt to lower the high crime rates in society. Although, Gates states in the experiment, “high crime rates and the persistence of the crime problem in the face of what appear to be failed law enforcement programs have created new problems of legitimacy and work overload for criminal justice systems.” (2) This identifies that while high crime rates can serve as a problem for police agencies their programs were designed to ultimately lower that rate. Instead what is does is creates a system that is eligible to have more power and surveillance over people and over patrol specific communities identified as oppressed groups. Creating a much more difficult process for criminal justice systems to acquire proper information on high crime locations. Similar to how the Bronx, which is patrolled by the NYPD, those who are classified as Hispanic and Latino face more interaction with law enforcement than those who are white. Making it clear that surveillance is potentially part of the reason why so many juveniles are arrested each year. Surveillance is not stopping the crime; it is only making it easier to convict or arrest those who break the law.
Living on the outskirts of the Bronx, I have yet to dive into data or information that is relating to the criminal justice system near my hometown. After doing extensive research and decoding of data, I have learned many new things about the Bronx county I live in as well as the neighboring county of Westchester. So close in location to one another yet having such different data on juvenile arrests makes one question what I might not have noticed for years living in the excluded town of the Bronx known as City Island. The most amazing part of this project was uncovering the fact that the data from the Bronx on types of crimes juveniles are charged with left me with no data to analyze. The only reason this data is blank can be blamed on NYPD’s use of dirty data in predictive policing systems as well as information that is implemented in the criminal justice profiles of juveniles. Blank boxes with nothing to interpret leaves, anyone, to believe something is wrong here. Westchester’s information for the majority of the data and statistics is present and eligible. While the Bronx data is the complete opposite. Data comes in all forms of shapes and sizes or even on various topics. The one time I am genuinely curious about crime statistics, I am unable to understand the trends these two bordering counties have. While attempting to research this data on multiple other sources, it has become evident that the data does not exist or is unable to be retrieved by any other source. I question the power government agencies have in our society today. Responsible for collecting accurate and truthful data, they time and time again proves they have failed to do their job like other bordering counties have and continue to do.
Created with images by Bill Oxford - "untitled image" • Markus Spiske - "untitled image" • Alexis Fauvet - "BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU. "