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Metropolitan Police Department 
MPD Special Order establishing Neighborhood Safety Zones
June 4, 2008




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Title: Neighborhood Safety Zones
Topic/Number: SO-08-06
Effective Date: June 4, 2008
Distribution: To Be Determined
Related to: General Order 304.10 (Police-Citizen Contacts, Stops and Frisks), Effective July 1, 1973
            GO-OPS-301.03 (Vehicular Pursuits), Effective February 25, 2003



I. Background
II. Policy
III. Definitions
IV. Regulations
V. Procedural Guidelines

[VI. Cross References
VII. Attachments
Attachment A: PD Form 907-A (Neighborhood Safety Zone Manager's Report;
Attachment B: PD Form 76 (Stop or Contact Report) (Revised 04/19/05)]


The establishment of Neighborhood Safety Zones is an effective law enforcement tool for addressing violent crime. Vehicles are common instrumentalities of crime, particularly armed violent crime. It is in the interest of law enforcement to prohibit vehicles with no legitimate purpose to enter neighborhoods that have been victimized by spikes in violent crime. The U.S. Courts have found that such zones are constitutional when limited in scope, and when conducted for a legitimate law enforcement purpose.

This Special Order provides guidance for establishing Neighborhood Safety Zones, consistent with constitutional requirements that provide high police visibility, prevent and deter crime, safeguard officers and community members, and create safer District of Columbia neighborhoods.


It is the policy of the Metropolitan Police Department to lawfully establish Neighborhood Safety Zones to promote the health, safety, and welfare of the District of Columbia residents and visitors.


When used in this directive, the following terms shall have the meaning designated:

1. Member: Sworn employee of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

2. Neighborhood Safety Zone (NSZ): Delineated geographic area designated by the Chief of Police in response to documented crimes of violence the purpose of which is to provide high police visibility, prevent and deter crime, safeguard officers and community members, and create safer District of Columbia neighborhoods.

3. Neighborhood Safety Zone Checkpoint: A location at the perimeter of the NSZ where vehicles are stopped for the purpose of determining whether the operator and occupant(s) have a legitimate reason for entering the NSZ.

4. Neighborhood Safety Zone Manager – Member the rank of Lieutenant or above who manages the individual Neighborhood Safety Zone operation.

5. Neighborhood Safety Zone (NSZ) Manager's Report (PD Form 907-A) (Attachment A) – Report completed by the NSZ Manager that documents why, when, where, and how an NSZ was conducted.


A. An NSZ may be established solely in reaction to crimes of violence occurring in a designated location.

1. The NSZ shall be established for a specific and legitimate law enforcement purpose, (e.g., recently reported criminal incident(s) including homicides, shootings, robberies, and other offenses as approved by the Chief of Police).

2. The NSZ shall be targeted to promote community safety interests while minimizing interference with normal community activities.

3. The NSZ Checkpoint shall be conducted systematically so as to minimize or eliminate police officer discretion in stopping vehicles from entering the NSZ.

4. The NSZ shall be established for no more than five (5) days, unless the Chief of Police approves an extension of no more than five (5) additional days.

B. The recommendation to establish an NSZ, and the selection of the location for an NSZ, shall be made by an official the rank of Commander and above.

C. Each NSZ shall be approved, in advance, by the Chief of Police or designee, provided that the designee shall not hold a rank lower than Assistant Chief of Police.

D. Only those members who have successfully completed all NFZ-related training required by the Chief of Police may participate in the implementation of an NSZ.  NSZ-related training shall include specific limitations on members exercise of discretion in determining whether a vehicle will be permitted to enter the NSZ.

E. Each member assigned to an NSZ shall wear an MPD-approved visibility vest and be provided other required equipment (e.g., cones, light tower).


A. An NSZ location shall be selected with the primary purpose of addressing a neighborhood violent crime problem.  Evidence to support the existence of a neighborhood crime problem may include:

1. Pertinent crime data;

2. Information contained in citizen and community reports and complaints; and

3. Information gathered from criminal intelligence sources.

B. Documentation of the evidence prepared based on Part V.A above, and an explanation of how the evidence supports the purpose of the NSZ, as described in Part  IV.A above, shall be preserved and attached to the PD Form 907-A [Neighborhood Safety Zone (NSZ) Manager's Report] associated with the NSZ.

C. In selecting an NSZ location, the following criteria shall be considered:

1. The NSZ shall not unnecessarily interfere with routine community activities;

2. There shall be sufficient space for deploying members assigned to the NSZ;

3. There shall be sufficient space on the roadway for deploying one (1) or more marked MPD vehicles such that the vehicle(s) are clearly visible;

4. There shall be sufficient space for deploying equipment to alert vehicle operators approaching the NSZ;

5. NSZ operations shall cause minimum delays to normal traffic patterns; and

6. The area shall permit a sufficient number of checkpoints for establishing an adequate perimeter.

D. Each NSZ checkpoint shall be staffed by a minimum of five (5) officers and one (1) official the rank of Sergeant or above.

E. An official, of at least the rank of Lieutenant, shall be designated as the NSZ Manager and may increase, but not decrease, the NSZ staffing depending on factors such as location, level of criminal activity, and number of stops.

F. Each member assigned to an NSZ shall:

1. Be equipped with a visibility vest, flashlight, cones, flares, Notice of Infraction (NOI) books, PD Form 61-D (Violation Notice) books, and PD Forms 76 (Stop or Contact Report);

2. Identify himself/herself, his/her assigned District or element, the reason for the NSZ, and the reason for the stop;

3. Inquire whether the operator and occupant(s) of a stopped vehicle have a legitimate reason for entering the NSZ as follows;

NOTE: Absent exigent circumstances, legitimate reasons are:

a. The person resides in the NSZ;

b. The person is employed in the NSZ or is on a commercial delivery;

c. The person attends school or a day-care facility, or is taking a child to, or picking up a child from, a school or day-care facility in the NSZ;

d. The person is a relative of a person who resides in the NSZ;

e. The person is seeking medical attention, is elderly, or is disabled; and/or

f. The person is attempting to attend a verified organized civic, community or religious event in the NSZ; or

g. An official the rank of Sergeant or above assigned to the NSZ approves the entry.

4. Request operator identification when attempting to determine the legitimacy of the reason for entering an NSZ.

5. Require proof of the reason for entry; the operator must provide information sufficient for the member to verify the accuracy of the reason. This may include, but is not limited to, a telephone number of the address to which the person seeks entry (which the member may use to verify that the resident/occupant expects the person(s)) and/or an invitation to a verified organized civic, community, or religious event located within the NSZ.

NOTE: Persons cannot be compelled to proffer a reason for entry into an NSZ; however, failing to provide a reason for entry is sufficient for denial of entry.

6. Deny a stopped vehicle access to the NSZ when it is determined that the motor vehicle operator does not have a legitimate reason for entering the NSZ; and

7. Arrest any motor vehicle operator who refuses to comply with lawful police direction with Failure to Obey (Title 18 DCMR § 2000.2).

G. The NSZ Manager shall:

1. Prior to establishing the NSZ, the NSZ Manager shall:

a. Verify that adequate natural lighting or street lighting is present;

b. Verify that adequate space is available for safe operations, deployment of personnel, traffic flow, and parking for the vehicles of arrested persons;

c. Notify the affected District's Watch Commander of the anticipated location, date, and time; and

d. Conduct roll call with all members assigned to the NSZ;

2. Ensure all stop locations are clearly defined using barricades, lights, cones, and/or flares to reduce excessive traffic backup;

3. Ensure a marked vehicle is positioned in the event a vehicular traffic stop is necessary;

4. Ensure that members employ the stop method that requires that every vehicle attempting entry is stopped;

5. Ensure, when practical, at least two (2) members approach each stopped vehicle;

6. In the event that all assigned members become involved with multiple stops and/or traffic is affected, approve the temporary suspension of the NSZ checkpoint stops until the vehicular congestion is relieved;

7. Ensure that each instance of a stopped vehicle is documented on a PD Form 76 (Stop or Contact Report) (Attachment B);

a. For vehicles that are denied entry, the PD Form 76 shall include the operator information, vehicle description, vehicle tag number, and reason for denial.

b. For vehicles that are permitted entry, and in cases where the operator elects to leave the checkpoint without providing information, the PD Form 76 shall include the vehicle tag number, and where appropriate, the reason for entry.

8. Ensure that the documentation required by Part V.B above is attached to the PD Form 907-A; and

9. Transmit the original PD Form 907-A and all accompanying documentation to the Watch Commander prior to the end of the tour of duty in which the NSZ was concluded.

H. The Police District Watch Commander shall:

1. Record the NSZ notification on the Watch Commander's Report and   notify, in turn, the Command Information Center (CIC);

2. Review, sign, and date the PD Form 907; and

3. Ensure that a copy of the signed and dated PD Form 907 is forwarded to the CIC and the Police District Administrative Office.

I. The Police District Commander shall:

1. When requesting the establishment of an NSZ in his/her District, meet the requirements of Part V. A and V.C above;

2. Ensure that only members who have successfully completed all required training participate in the PSA;

3. Prepare a memorandum to the Chief of Police, through the chain of command, that includes:

a. Proposed date(s) and times that an area should be declared an NSZ;

b. Evidence used in making the selection of the location, date(s), and times;

c. Justification for the determination consistent with Part V.A and V.C above;

d. Plan specifying the resources to be used to mark the area as an NFZ  and the deployment of personnel and resources to the NFZ; and

e. Detailed map outlining the boundaries of the proposed NSZ;

4. Upon the approval of the Chief of Police for establishing an NSZ and prior to the establishment of the NSZ:

a. Ensure the procurement and distribution of a sufficient quantity of notices containing information regarding the NSZ to residences and businesses;

b. Ensure the procurement of a sufficient quantity of posters entitled, "Warning, This Area Has Been Declared A Neighborhood Safety Zone", from the Reproduction Section, Police Business Services Division, Corporate Support Bureau;

c. Ensure the NSZ posters are properly completed; located, at a minimum, around the borders of the NSZ; and secured to available objects (e.g., lamp posts) or placed on wooden stakes;

NOTE:  Any member who observes an individual injuring, breaking, or destroying any NSZ poster may charge the individual with a misdemeanor Destruction of Property (D.C. Official Code § 22-303).

5. Ensure that at least one (1) member assigned to the affected Patrol Service Area(s) included within the  NSZ is assigned to each checkpoint;

6. Upon the expiration of the NSZ time period, direct members of his/her command to promptly remove all signs and other identifying documents and equipment from the boundaries and areas within the former NSZ;

7. Following the expiration of the NSZ time period, submit a report to the Chief of Police, through the chain of command, within ten (10) business days, with the following information:

a. Location of the NSZ, including the exact boundaries;

b. Personnel and other resources allocated to the NSZ;

c. Time(s) and date(s) of:

(1) Distribution of notices to the residences and businesses located within the NSZ;

(2) Period that the NSZ was implemented;

(3) Marking of the boundaries with posters; and

(4) Removal of all posters from the former NSZ;

d. Number of locations at which posters were placed;

e. Number and type of crime index offenses that occurred in the NSZ during the NSZ time period;

f. Total number of arrests related to the NSZ;

g. Number and type of complaint(s) received as a result of NSZ activities;

h. Any significant event or unusual incident that occurred in the NSZ during the NSZ time period, and

i. After-action evaluation of the NSZ operation;

8. When the NFZ abuts the boundary of another Police District, notify the Commanding Officer of the affected district;

9. Establish and maintain a District file as follows:

a. A separate folder shall be established each NSZ;

b. The folder, at a minimum, shall include:

(1) Copy of the recommendation memorandum submitted to the Chief of Police with the signature of approval of the Chief;

(2) All documents supporting the recommendation for the establishment of the NSZ;

(3) Record of when, how, and by whom the NSZ notices and posters were distributed and posted;

(4) Enforcement documentation and crime statistics for the NSZ time period;

(5) Information about any unusual or significant incident; and

(6) A copy of the final report to the Chief of Police.

J. The Director, Corporate Support Bureau shall be responsible for the preparation of the NSZ warning posters.

K. The Assistant Chief, Patrol Services and School Security Bureau, shall forward to the Chief of Police each request for the establishment of an NSZ he/she has approved.

L. The General Counsel shall:

1. Review all requests for the establishment of an NSZ for legal sufficiency; and

2. Advise the Chief of Police, in writing, whether the request for an NSZ meets legal requirements.

M. The Chief of Police shall:

1. Approve or disapprove each request for the establishment of an NSZ.


A. D.C. Official Code § 22-303 (Malicious Burning, Destruction, or Injury of Another's Property)

B. Title 18 (Vehicles and Traffic) DCMR § 2000.2 


Attachment A: PD Form 907-A (Neighborhood Safety Zone Manager's Report;

Attachment B: PD Form 76 (Stop or Contact Report) (Revised 04/19/05)

Cathy L. Lanier 
Chief of Police

PD Form 907-A (051108)

Attachment A

PD Form 907-A NSZ Supervisor’s Report
Rev. 06/04

Metropolitan Police Department
Washington, D.C.

Neighborhood Safety Zone (NSZ) Manager's Report

Date: [DD/MM/YY]
NSZ Lieutenant: [Print: Last, First, Middle Initial]
Checkpoint Locations: [Intersection(s) and/or Address(es)]
Time Began: [Hour, Minute]
Time Ended: [Hour, Minute]
Time Paused: [Hour, Minute]
Time Resumed: [Hour, Minute]
District Watch Commander Notified: [Rank, Last Name, First Name, Badge Number, Date/Time Notified]
Stop Procedure: [For Example: All Vehicles; Every Third Vehicle]
Total # Vehicles Passed Through NSZ:
Total # Vehicles Stopped From Entering NSZ:
Total # Vehicles Failing to
Stop at NSZ:
Total # of NOIs Issued:
Total # of PD 76s Completed:
Total # of PD 61-Ds Issued:


Arrest Number
Name of Arrestee
NSZ Lieutenant's Full Signature: [First Name, Middle Initial, Last Name]
Date of Signature:
Reviewed by Watch Commander: [Print Rank, First Name, Middle Initial, Last Name, Badge Number]
Watch Commander's Full Signature: [First Name, Middle Initial, Last Name]
Date of Signature:

Attachment B

SO-08-06 06/03/08

PD Form 76 Stop or Contact Report (Revised 04/19/05)                  Card # (yymmdd-xxxx): ______________

Date (mm/dd/yy) & military time (hh:mm)
Vehicle        Spot check       Stop
Pedestrian    Contact            Stop CCN#(yy-nnnnnn): ______
Bicycle:        Contact            Stop
District and PSA
Duration of Stop _____ (minutes)
  Last name

   Passenger in vehicle

First name
Middle name
Home address (street number and name, city, state, zip)
Phone number
(     )


  American Indian/Alaskan Native                Black/African American
  Asian                                                         Hispanic/Latino
  Arab American                                          White
D08 (mm/dd/yy)
Eye color
Hair color/style
Facial hair, scars, tattoos, clothing, etc.
  Driver's license/permit number and state

PO Form 76 Stop or Contact Report (Revised 04/19/05)                          Card # (yymmdd-xxxx): ___________________

  Vehicle type
Color (top/bottom)
Tag/Bike registration number
Owner's last name
Owner's first name
Owner's address (St., No#, Name, City, State, Zip)
Dents/Other Identifiers:
Prlmary reason for contact/stop (choose one)
   Moving violation-NOI:
   Equipment violation
   Registration violation
   Call for service (suspect/ vehicle description)
   Pre-existing knowledge
   Special detail/checkpoints
   Suspicious activity
   Other ________
Dispositlon of the contact/stop   (choose all that apply)
   No action                                                               Vehicle impounded
   Verbal warning (traffic)                                            Report taken
   Other warning issued                                               Drugs seized
   Fine issued                                                              Weapons seized
   Operator arrested                                                    Search conducted
   Passenger(s) arrested                                               Consent to search?
   # of arrests:                                                                     Yes     No
                                                                                   Other. _______
Additional remarks
Reporting Member (Print Name)                                    Element/C AD #
Reviewing Official (Print Name)                                        Element/CAD#

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