New IACP Partnership: iTrafficking
In partnership with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the IACP is undertaking an 18-month project to develop a crime-gun intelligence sharing strategy that can be replicated across the country. As part of this project, a promising strategy in use at the New Jersey Regional Operations Intelligence Center (ROIC) will be pilot tested at fusion centers in four states that comprise the Interstate 95 corridor: Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. The role of fusion centers in the timely collection, analysis, and dissemination of criminal intelligence based on crime gun tracing to the field supports strategic partnerships between local, state, and federal law enforcement to interdict firearms trafficking and reduce violent crime.
The pilot test initiative, known as iTrafficking, provides ATF firearms crime analysts at each of the pilot site fusion centers. The analysts will collaborate with their state and local counterparts to identify targets, trafficking patterns, and trends at state and regional levels.
Concurrently, the IACP will continue to advocate the practice of comprehensive crime gun tracing by developing a national education and awareness campaign. Crime gun tracing follows the legal commerce path of a particular firearm from the manufacturer or importer through transit and delivery to a wholesale dealer or Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), ending with the original purchaser. By comprehensively tracing every gun recovered, law enforcement officers will gather investigative leads on individual cases and be able to identify crime gun trends within their communities. Crime gun tracing and analysis are free tools available to law enforcement through the ATF National Tracing Center via eTrace, mail, or fax.
Updates regarding this project, the iTrafficking pilot sites, and available materials on crime gun tracing can be found on the IACP Gun Violence Reduction web page at http://www.theiacp.org/PublicationsGuides/ResearchCenter/Projects/GunViolenceReduction/tabid/302/Default.aspx.
Missing Persons: Volunteers Supporting Law Enforcement
In partnership with the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, and Volunteers in Police Services (VIPS), the IACP is pleased to announce the publication of Missing Persons: Volunteers Supporting Law Enforcement. This publication discusses the use of affiliated and spontaneous volunteers in missing person investigations, the types of missing persons cases, tips for dealing with the media, information on how to access technology and resources available from partner organizations, and details from individual agency experiences with missing persons cases. This publication was developed to reach individuals who manage law enforcement volunteer programs. To download a copy of the publication, visit http://www.policevolunteers.org/resources/publications. To request a hard copy, visit http://www.policevolunteers.org/feedback.
Speed and Alcohol: A Deadly Mix
The IACP recently conducted a research study examining the relationship between speed and alcohol in fatal crashes. It has long been understood, through both data and anecdotal accounts, that there is a link between speed and alcohol when looking at the broad picture of crash data nationally: speeders are often impaired, and impaired drivers are often speeding.
This final report examines the link between speed and alcohol and identifies real-life, successful programs to help chief executives address not only issues of traffic-related deaths in their communities, but also the detection, which is so frequently associated with a motivated traffic safety team, of a wide spectrum of crime.
To access the report, visit http://www.theiacp.org/portals/0/pdfs/SpeedAndAlcoholOct2010.pdf. For more information, contact Patricia Casstevens at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 367.
Report: Drug Use in Fatal Crashes Rises
A new report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), “Drug Involvement of Fatally Injured Drivers,” reveals post-mortem testing results that show an increase in the level of drug involvement among fatally injured drivers in the United States over a five-year period from 2005 to 2009.
Drug involvement does not mean the driver was impaired or that drug use was the cause of the crash. According to NHTSA, 63 percent—more than 13,500 drivers—of the 21,798 drivers who were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2009 were tested for drugs. Of these, 3,952 tested positive for drug involvement, representing just over 18 percent of the total for that year. The report also showed drug use reported by the states among fatally injured drivers increasing from 13 percent in 2005 to 15 percent in 2006, 16 percent in 2007, and 18 percent in 2008.
The drug data were collected by NHTSA as part of its Fatality Analysis Reporting System and included information collected from the states under three broad categories: whether the driver was tested, the type of test conducted, and the test results. The categories of drugs tested included illicit drugs, legally prescribed drugs, and over-the-counter medicines.
“Every driver on the road has a personal responsibility to operate his or her vehicle with full and uncompromised attention on the driving task,” said NHTSA administrator David Strickland. “This report provides a warning signal that too many are driving after having taken drugs, not realizing the potential for putting themselves and others on the highway at risk.”
In announcing the drug findings, Strickland did offer some cautions, including the fact that drug test results are unavailable for a large portion of fatally injured drivers. There was a wide variance among states regarding the extent of drug testing conducted.
State drug testing techniques and procedures are evolving and, currently, states, as well as jurisdictions within a state, may test for different drugs, use different test types, and employ different concentration thresholds for determining whether a test was positive or not.
NHTSA is continuing to conduct research to better understand the relationship between drug levels and vehicle crashes.
The report is available online at http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811415.pdf.
Three New Publications Available
The Fingerprint Sourcebook is an updated publication by the Scientific Working Group on Friction Ridge Analysis, Study, and Technology at the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The sourcebook is published in chapters and is available online at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/nij/pubs-sum/225320.htm, with links to chapters from the table of contents page.
Considered a definitive guide to the science of fingerprint identification, the sourcebook is an invaluable resource for forensic practitioners. The updated material includes chapter 7 “Latent Print Development;” chapter 8 “The Preservation of Friction Ridge Information;” and chapter 15 “Special Abilities and Vulnerabilities in Forensic Expertise.”
In addition, forensic practitioners can sign up to receive e-mail updates whenever NIJ releases a new chapter or any new publication. Sign up at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/nij/pubs-sum/225320.htm.
The Changing Environment for Policing, 1985–2008 is a new publication that explores the differences in the environment for policing. The document is part of a series called New Perspectives in Policing from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, sponsored by the NIJ.
Twenty years ago, policing was in a revolution of sorts in its operating approach. It realized the importance of enlisting the public in the coproduction of public safety. One finding discussed in the publication is that police could reduce crime when they focused operations on particular problems or places and when they supplemented law enforcement with other regulatory and abatement activities. The current policing challenges identified by the authors include declining budgets and rising costs; terrorism; new immigrants, both legal and illegal; racial discrimination; intensified accountability; and police unions.
The report also identifies pressures eroding the monopoly of governments within national boundaries to create and manage policing, coming from the following three directions: the internationalization of policing, the devolution of policing to communities, and the growth of private policing.
The report is available online at http://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/ncj230576.pdf.
The Justice Expenditure and Employment Extracts, 2007 presents data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Annual Government Finance Survey and Annual Survey of Public Employment. This series includes federal-, national-, and state-level estimates of government expenditures and employment for the following justice categories: police protection; all judicial functions (including prosecution, courts, and public defense); and corrections. Following are three key findings:
- Local governments spent more on criminal justice direct expenditures than state governments or the federal government.
- Direct expenditures for each of the major criminal justice functions—police, corrections, and judiciary—have increased steadily since 1982.
- In fiscal year 2006, federal, state, and local governments spent an estimated $214 billion for police protection, corrections, and judicial activities—a 5.1 percent increase over the previous year.
The report is available online at http://www.bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=2315.
Homeland Security: Best Practices for Local Government
The International City/County Management Association (ICMA) has released the second edition of its publication Homeland Security: Best Practices for Local Government. Packed with 41 articles, including case studies of best practices from nearly 60 local governments in economically, politically, and racially diverse communities, this book represents the most comprehensive resource available on homeland security best practices specifically for local governments.
Most of the contributions focus on new practices and effective policies that have been adopted in local governments. The included articles reflect state-of-the-art practices in homeland security that will help limit the loss of life and property during future emergencies and disasters of all types, both natural and man-made.
This completely revised second edition represents an attempt to codify some of the knowledge in the new, dynamic, and everchanging field of homeland security. The articles are organized into sections representing the primary four phases of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery, plus introductory and concluding sections that set the material in context.
For more information and to order, visit http://www.icma.org/press/homelandsecurity. ■