Needs and Prospects for Crime-Fighting Technology: The Federal Role in Assisting State and Local Law Enforcement

By William Schwabe | Go to book overview

Chapter Seven
RECOMMENDATIONS
Regarding the technological needs of state and local law enforcement agencies, informed decisions should take into account an overall assessment of what technologies are in use across the nation and how well or poorly they are presently performing. For the most part, that information is lacking.Thus, it would be useful to hold federal hearings or commission studies to determine what is happening around the country, as input to policy planning. A well-conceived study would probably more than pay for itself in cost savings and improved public safety. Such a study would probably best include both a broadly based survey of agencies across the nation and more-detailed operationally oriented site visits to a representative sample of agencies. It could provide a sound basis for establishing realistic performance goals for each element of the proposed initiative.Presently lacking the comprehensive, empirical data we would like, this report has provided a number of anecdotal examples suggestive of broader problems and solutions.In summary, our findings and recommendations are these:
The technology assistance provided by the existing NLECTCs and their partnering organizations appears to be paying high returns on investment, helping law enforcement agencies solve crimes and protect both the public and the police. Although we cannot rigorously quantify it, there appears to be considerably more latent demand for this assistance than can currently be supplied. The pilot effort has proved itself and should be continued on an

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