NEWS FROM THE FIELD
Search for Suspects in the Paris Attacks Leads to Raids in France and Belgium
More than 160 anti-terrorism raids were staged on Monday, November 16, by police in France and Belgium on the hunt for suspects in the Paris attacks. One of the main suspects is a Belgian militant, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, who may also have links to last summer’s foiled assault on a high-speed train. Salah Abdeslam, a Belgian-born French national, is the only one of at least eight assailants who took part in the attacks still alive, although authorities think there is a possibility there were as many as 20 plotters. In addition, two more of Friday’s attackers who committed suicide have been identified.
An alleged Islamic State–backed video threatened to strike again on other cities, including Washington, D.C. In light of these attacks, world leaders were urged by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at the Group of 20 summit in Turkey not to treat Syrian refugees like terrorists.
FBI Opens New Chapter in the Fight Against “Going Dark”
The National Domestic Communications Assistance Center (NDCAC) opened in March 2013 to help around 18,000 federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies across the United States investigate crimes involving digital information. Following the leak by Edward Snowden, many tech companies, such as Apple and Google, began introducing new security measures in their phone operating systems that only allow password-holders access to unlock the phone and its contents. The companies claim that because of the new measures, they cannot access this encrypted information during a criminal investigation, search warrant or not.
The NDCAC plays a role in helping law enforcement try to find other ways to track criminal suspects without that information. It can also help test solutions and their applicability to other agencies. The NDCAC will not be doing its own surveillance or cracking the encryptions of companies like Apple or Google; instead, it will be helping other law enforcement agencies, tackling technical problems, and maintain a hotline for when various law enforcement agencies run into roadblocks.
DOJ Announces 10 Tribes to Participate in Initial Phase of Tribal Access Program
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the first 10 tribes that will participate in the initial User Feedback Phase of the Tribal Access Program for National Crime Information (TAP), which is a program that provides tribes with the ability to exchange crime information for civil and criminal purposes. This phase will provide access to U.S. crime information databases and technical support, which will allow a new level of information sharing between tribal, state, and federal governments. TAP will support the identification of tribes’ needs for crime information and provide solutions, such as biometric/biographic computer workstations capable of processing fingerprints and palm prints, taking mugshots, sharing records, and accessing the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Service.
Pennsylvania Panel Votes to Protect Police Names After Use of Force
A recent bill, Pennsylvania House Bill 1538, approved unanimously by the state House Judiciary Committee, would keep a police officer’s name confidential after incidents involving use of force until an investigation is complete or criminal charges have been filed. Bill sponsor, Rep. Martina White’s reasoning behind the bill is that police officers and their families could be in danger following police-involved shootings, even if the use of force was justified, because they have become so politically charged recently. The ACLU of Pennsylvania opposes this bill.
DEA Announces 360 Strategy to Address Heroin, Prescription Drugs, and Violent Crime
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced that Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, would be its pilot city for their new comprehensive law enforcement and prevention 360 Strategy that aims to help cities dealing with heroin and prescription drug abuse epidemics and related violent crime. The strategy has a three-prong approach to fighting drug traffickers. It involves providing DEA leadership with coordinated DEA enforcement actions targeting all levels of drug trafficking with ongoing law enforcement operations; having a long-lasting impact by engaging drug manufacturers, wholesalers, practitioners, and pharmacists to increase awareness of the problems and push for responsible prescribing and use; and changing attitudes through community outreach and partnerships with local organizations to better equip and empower communities.
Tracking Reentry Nationwide: Strategies That Work
According to a report by the Research Triangle Institute and the Urban Institute, giving inmates the opportunity to engage with community service providers prior to release and ensuring they have adequate support post-release are two of the most effective approaches for re-entry. This support often includes things like education, job training, mental health treatment, and a variety of others. This study looks at current programs for inmates in various states that provide these specific services and compares them and what has been learned from them.
Access the study.
DEA 2015 Drug Threat Assessment
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has released the results from the National Drug Threat Assessment (NDTA), which notes that drug overdose deaths are the leading cause of death in the United States, even ahead of motor vehicles and firearms. Over half of the drug overdose deaths in 2013 in the United States were caused by prescription painkillers and heroin. This threat assessment also found that, as the main suppliers of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana, Mexican transnational criminal organizations are the biggest criminal threat to the United States.
Read the assessment.
Report on U.S. Youth Incarceration Rates
According to a new brief and infographic from the Council of State Governments Justice Center, juvenile incarceration rates have dropped dramatically in 47 states. Despite this wonderful progress, there is still more work to be done and as such, representatives and teams f DEArom all 50 states are meeting to discuss more steps forward to ensure there will be enough supervision, services, and resources provided to reduce the likelihood youth will be rearrested and end up in the adult criminal justice system. The brief focuses on current loopholes or gaps in states’ policies towards young adults and recommendations to address these gaps, while the infographic shows the dropping incarceration rates.
Read the brief.
View the infographic.
On Demand Webinar: How Predictive Analytics Can Help Police Chiefs Cut Crime
Innocence Project Primer on Implementing Electronic Recording of Custodial Interviews
Technology Policy Update Reminder
New technologies and applications are constantly evolving and continue to provide benefits and pose challenges to law enforcement. For example, Periscope is an application that allows users to broadcast live video streams from their smartphone or tablet devices, and we’ve seen at least one local law enforcement officer do precisely that from their squad car while on duty. As agencies adopt new technologies, or allow personnel to use their own technologies, such as smart phones and tablets, Chiefs are encouraged to review and update their agency policies at least annually, or whenever new technologies, or new features or functions of existing technologies are introduced. Building and enforcing agency policies helps ensure that technologies are used effectively, that privacy rights of citizens and officers are respected, and that officer safety is properly addressed.
IACP has published a variety of policy guides and model policies to assist agencies in this process, including Social Media, Body-Worn Cameras, Automated License Plate Recognition, Mobile Communication Devices, Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Cloud Computing, and the IACP Technology Policy Framework. For more information, please review the IACP Model Policies.
Performance Measurement Webinar: Traffic Incident Management (11/19)
The Federal Highway Administration will be hosting a webinar later this week about traffic incident management performance measures, including an overview of recent research and resources available. It will discuss the output of NCHRP 07-20: Guidance on the Implementation of TIM Performance Measures, the TIM PM online tool, potential uses for the tool, and any updates. The webinar will also include a follow-up on a pilot project in Nevada where the tool is being used, recent advances in TIM performance in Oregon, an on-going project by Arizona DOT analyzing crash data, and provide updates on the most recent resources available for agencies.
The webinar will take place from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ESST on November 19, 2015.
November Is Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month
Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month is an opportunity to promote awareness about the characteristics of the United States’ critical infrastructure, challenges and threats faced by critical infrastructure sectors, and public-private sector partnerships to enhance security and resilience.
Access U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Office of Science and Technology offers a Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month 2015 Toolkit.
Transport Security Expo in Olympia London (12/2–12/3)
The Transport Security Expo will this year be delivering free learning opportunities for all delegates on a first-come, first-served basis. The conference and seminar sessions will cover the full range of transport security sectors—Aviation Security, Maritime Security, Rail Security, Major Events Transport Security, Secure Transportation, and Border Security.
In addition, the Security Innovation Seminars theatre, also free-to-attend, will host a full two-day programme of presentations and live demonstrations from a wide range of the event’s exhibitors who will be revealing some of the very latest technologies in numerous areas including: airport check point, perimeter security, large area monitoring, digital railways, surveillance solutions, biometrics, supply chain security and integrity, maritime security and text analytics.
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