Challenges and Choices for Crime-Fighting Technology: by William Schwabe, Lois M. Davis, Brian A. Jackson

By William Schwabe, Lois M. Davis, Brian A. Jackson

This file offers findings of a examine of expertise in use or wanted by way of legislations enforcement firms on the country and native point, for the aim of informing federal policymakers as they think about technology-related help for those organizations.

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Numbers are statistically adjusted percent of agencies responding as indicated. Table 4 State Law Enforcement Agency Ratings of Technology-Related Needs Technology-Related Need Percent Reporting Need as High Priority Technology for command and control of own agency’s operations 86% Information to make better technology-related plans and decisions 79% Technology for improving account ability within own agency 73% Technology for interoperability with other agencies 64% Technology to more effectively or efficiently train personnel 60% Training to use technology available or being acquired by own agency 57% Standards for judging or certifying equipment or other technology 54% SOURCE: LETS, 9.

Numbers are percent of laboratories responding as indicated. xxxii Challenges and Choices for Crime-Fighting Technology commercialization. Since most local departments do not perform R&D or generally request technology commercialization aid, there is little reason for them to be aware of these programs. The focus of many burdened departments and laboratories is necessarily short term on the immediate priorities of today; as a result, the long-term focus of R&D must seem distant from their current needs.

Technology has a role to play in increasing accountability of law enforcement officers both to their organization’s leadership and to the public. As technology makes it more possible for law enforcement to record interviews of witnesses and suspects, to ensure that physical evidence is properly collected and protected, and to avoid unnecessary damage or destruction of persons and property, these safeguards will become more in demand. Failure of law enforcement to keep up with technology in these areas may increase risks of both civil liability and losing criminal cases in court.

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