This is the first announcement of eight categories of finalists for the 2013 ConnectedCOPS Awards.

Stay tuned for the announcement of finalists in seven other categories over the next several days.


LAwS Communications announces the finalists for the
ConnectedCOPS Excellence at a Small Agency Award.

The finalists in this category have demonstrated innovation and variety of approaches to integrating social media. We congratulate all our finalists for their incredible contribution to the global effort to achieve excellence in social media use by law enforcement.

ConnectedCOPS Excellence at a Small Agency

This award is given to a law enforcement agency of 150 sworn officers or fewer that has demonstrated overall excellence in the use of social media to enhance its services to the public. The agency exhibits leadership, creativity and innovation in its use of social media to engage, educate, recruit, and etc. The agency has a broad and deep understanding of social media use and applies sound governance and strategy in its social media operations. The agency also promotes the use of social networking in law enforcement through its outreach to colleagues and by mentoring others.

The three finalists are:

Chelsea Police, Massachusetts, USA
In a very short time, with superior leadership, the CPD has exemplified a keen understanding of the need for strategic application of social media in policing. The Department strategy began early in 2012. The Chelsea Police Department launched a brand new multi-lingual web site. The site brought a lot of information for the public to access with social media features such as a blog, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, and the Chief’s Weekly. Much of this was meant with the idea in mind that the public, and its diversity could follow our activities and become more engaged with public safety and related events. Through Twitter, the Department launched the Tweet-A-Tip Program meant to give crime prevention information to the public to help better police themselves.

Billerica Police, Massachusetts, USA
The Billerica Police Department was a 2012 finalist for a ConnectedCOPS Award in this category. The BPD has focused on increased community engagement with social media. The department has a keen awareness of the true sense of social media by its demonstrated relationship building with the community it serves. It has become a useful tool for many of its residents, young and old. The BPD emphasizes keeping the information current for the residents and the questions asked are answered as quickly as allowed.

North West Motorway Police Group, United Kingdom
The NWMPG is a new collaboration of motorway policing across the 4 police force areas of the North West of England. These forces are Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside. Only just a year since setting up its Twitter and Facebook accounts, the Group has 20,000 followers/friends. The accounts are known for disseminating news delays due to road traffic conditions, police incidents and rush hour activity. As information comes into the NWMPG control centre from a range of sources, including all the involved police forces via 999 calls and from the Highways Agency, it is related to the public. Social Media is also used to let the public know what success the Group has in policing the Region’s motorways and denying criminals the use of the motorway network. The NWMPG regularly makes arrests primarily for drink/drug driving, disqualified drivers, transport of drugs (recently £500,000 street value seized) and illegal immigrants.

Finalists in the other awards categories will be announced throughout the next several days on this blog. Check back to see the finalists for Social Media Investigator Award tomorrow. Winners will be announced September 25th at The SMILE Conference® in Omaha, Nebraska.

The ConnectedCOPS Awards were created by LAwS Communications with the intent of recognizing the good work being done by individual officers and law enforcement agencies with social media. The international law enforcement community will be considered for these awards. Any officer or agency anywhere in the world is eligible.