Operationalising POI management to reduce community harm: An evidence based approach to targeting high risk offenders though a predicted risk tool

Mr Peter Branca1, Mr Craig Darragh1

1Victoria Police, Australia

This presentation will outline how Victoria Police have modernised Persons of Interest (POI) Management practices in line with its organisational community safety priorities. The Victoria Police Offender Management Project was launched to enhance policing practices through the integrated management of POI’s causing the most harm.  Based on world’s best practice and research, the project encourages a focus on ‘offenders’ rather than ‘offences’.  Theoretical concepts, such as the ‘focussed-deterrence approach’, provide evidence on how reducing the opportunity and motivations to commit crime can be an effective crime reduction strategy.  Through a consultative approach, this project has standardised a framework for the practice of POI Management across Victoria Police.  These practices include an iterative process defined as ‘Scan’, ‘Prioritise’ and ‘Manage’.  This process includes the identification and prioritisation of high risk POIs, as well as the development of management plans. These plans involve individually tailored approaches to offer support services as well as deterrence and disruption strategies.  An important outcome of this project has been the development of a statistically valid and objective software tool for predicting POIs with the highest risk of reoffending. This presentation will outline how this tool is being developed with the aim to significantly improve the way police identify individuals with the highest risk of causing harm to the community.


Acting Inspector Peter Branca currently works with the Victoria Police Offender Management Project.  He has lecturing and research experience with both RMIT and Charles Sturt University, and has a Master Degree in Applied Science.

Craig Darragh is a Senior Statistician turned Data Scientist currently working on Machine Learning projects in the Victoria Police Specialist Intelligence Services Division and has a Degree in the field of Computer and Mathematical Sciences.


Australia & New Zealand Society of Evidence Based Policing

The Australia & New Zealand Society of Evidence Based Policing (ANZSEBP) was formed in April 2013 in Brisbane, Australia. The ANZSEBP is a police practitioner-led Society. The mission of the ANZSEBP is to develop, disseminate and advocate for police to use scientific research (“the evidence”) to guide best practice in all aspects of policing. The ANZSEBP Chairperson serves on the Executive Board of the British Society of Evidence Based Policing, ensuring that the ANZSEBP works cooperatively with an international group of police to advance evidence based policing.

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