Atlanta Police Chief Richard Pennington has hired a consulting firm to objectively review how the department operates. The reporting practices of Atlanta PD have been questioned for many years.

Linder & Associates is working under a contract with the Atlanta Police Foundation, which Pennington formed last year to raise money to supplement his department's budget. No city funds will be used to pay the firm run by John Linder, who reviewed the New Orleans Police Department when Pennington was the chief there.

"I want him to look at everything," Pennington says, "to tell everything wrong with the department...I want to make sure we look at every aspect of our reporting system and our reporting requirements."

It was found in 1998 that Atlanta PD failed to report dozens of rapes and hundreds of robberies when reporting crimes to teh FBI in 1996.

The firm will also review how Atlanta PD investigates and classifies the city's crimes, as well as the department's clearance rate on crime reports, its response time to emergency calls, and its deployment of officers. The firm will start by developing a computerized tracking system, Pennington says.

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