The Nation: Kojak Is a Phony

Television's Kojak, Columbo and Baretta are dazzling crime solvers. A combination of underground contacts, inside knowledge and outside hunches invariably puts a culprit behind bars (or in the morgue) before the last commercial. But real police detection, according to a new study by the Rand Corp., is far less successful. "The image of the detective as a guy with a network of informants who can help him crack cases is a myth," says Peter Greenwood, 36, the management analyst who directed the two-year survey of 156 U.S. police departments. Whether or not a case will be solved depends mostly on...

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