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Police Mathematics Essay

811 words - 4 pages

Police Mathematics

When you think of math does the word crime ever come to mind? Most likely you were thinking about measurements, properties and numbers. Mathematics is used in the everyday life of humans. Police use mathematics everyday on their job to solve crimes. Policemen jobs are to find out what happened at the sight of the scene of the crime or accident. They use math on the job to explain data that needs to be stored for information.
For example, a speeding car causing skid marks. “Data can be stored and interpreted using wavelets, probability and statistics. It can be securely transmitted using prime numbers and cryptography. But first of all, police must get at the information underlying the data. They must look at all the evidence left at the crime scene and work backwards to deduce what happened and who did it”(Budd1). In order for the officer to find out how fast the car was going at the scene he needs to solve an inverse problem. “Inverse problems are mathematical detective problems. An example of an inverse problem is trying to find the shape of an object only knowing its shadows ”(Budd1). In addition, a day on the job of being a cop. There is a car accident and the officer job is to figure out if the car was speeding or not. The only information the police officer has is the damage to the car, witnesses, and skid marks from the vehicle. By investigating the skid marks can help rebuild the accident. “The marks are caused by the speed of the car as well as other factors such as braking force, friction with the road and impacts with other vehicles”(Budd1). Without any witnesses at the scene of the accident, the police officers have to plug in a formula to figure out who is at fault of the accident. “The formula is the speed of the vehicle equals 15.9, square root of distance of the skid marks, and coefficient of friction”(Findlay). Police officers use these equations to figure out who is at fault. They also use math to figure out different circumstances to have more evidence in court.
On the other hand, Mathematical models help police fight crimes. “Most crimes like burglary, drugs use and homicide is predictable. These crimes can be avoided by moving into a nicer neighborhood and help prevent crimes. But this simple fact doesn’t help police prevent crime from spreading even if they know where it’s happening. Researchers from University...

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