Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Cincinnati Final Report on 2001 Race Riots

On December 17, 2002, Susan B. Dlott United States District Court Judge for the Southern District of Ohio appointed Saul A. Green and a team of eight policing experts (the Monitor Team) to monitor compliance with, and implementation of: the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), between the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), the City of Cincinnati (City) and the Cincinnati Police Department (CPD); and the Collaborative Agreement1 (CA), between the Plaintiffs,2 the Fraternal Order of police (FOP), the City and the CPD. During six years of monitoring, the Monitor Team published 21 quarterly reports that chronicle the state of compliance by the parties with the terms of the MOA and CA. The MOA and CA were born out of a unique Alternative
Dispute Resolution (ADR) process developed by Judge Dlott that came to be known as the Cincinnati
police-Community Collaborative.

This is the final Monitor’s Report. The report briefly discusses:
police community relations in America in an effort to put the MOA and CA in a historical context, the events leading to and the development of the MOA and CA, and some of the critical events and accomplishments during the five years of implementation and the sixth transition year. The Collaborative has been successful in laying a strong foundation for police reform. Many communities, over many decades, have tried to ameliorate the persistent problem of friction between minority communities, particularly African American communities, and the police, with little success. This report documents what went right, what went wrong and what is still to be accomplished in the Collaborative. We hope it will serve as a resource for other communities that face the complex challenge of producing healthy and productive police-community relationships and effective public safety.


Monday, December 29, 2008

Basics of Afghan Law and Criminal Justice

Basics of Afghan Law and Criminal Justice
The rule of law is one of the essential conditions of a country's development and its struggle against poverty. It comprises the fundamental prerequisite for an individual's freedom and his/her development in society, necessary for the realisation of democracy and social peace. Secondly, the rule of law provides a framework within which economic development and social welfare can flourish. It is on this basis that the German government has initiated a variety of projects in this regard over the past years. It is very gratifying that as a part of international efforts to help rebuilding Afghan institutions, the German Government and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan have jointly embarked on the project “Promotion of the Rule of Law in Afghanistan.” On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the project has been implemented since 2003 by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH (German Technical Cooperation). One of the major objectives of this project is to provide assistance to the judiciary and the executive of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. The functional scope and programmatic delivery of this project have been immense. With one noteworthy example being the legal education of police personnel. It is as part of these efforts that this book can be seen as another important step towards bringing the rule of law to Afghanistan.


Criminal Justice Jobs

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), a bureau within the Treasury Department’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, is the largest overt collector of financial intelligence in the United States. The mission of FinCEN is to safeguard the financial system from the abuses of financial crime, including terrorist financing, money laundering, and other illicit activity. We achieve this mission by administering the Bank Secrecy Act; supporting law enforcement, intelligence, and regulatory agencies through sharing and analysis of financial intelligence; building global cooperation with our counterpart financial intelligence units; and networking people, ideas, and information.

If you are you looking for a diverse opportunity where you can use your knowledge, skills, and expertise, an exciting career with FinCEN may be waiting for you. Please visit the links below to view the current job announcements. It is important to remember that when applying for a job at FinCEN, please be sure to follow all instructions contained in the job announcement to ensure that your application receives full consideration.


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Public Safety Technology in the News

Phila. Police to Be Permitted Larger Caliber Handguns
Philadelphia Inquirer, (12/06/2008), Andrew Maykuth

Police in Philadelphia will soon have more firepower. In 2009, officers will be allowed to carry .40- and .45-caliber semiautomatic handguns to replace their 9 mm pistols. The police weapons upgrade is seen as a means to provide officers with more tools to subdue criminals, who often carry powerful weapons. Offices will have to pay for the new guns, which cost $500 each. The larger caliber guns fire heavier and slower bullets, which are more likely to stop an adversary. Other Law Enforcement agencies that allow their officers to carry .45-caliber guns include the Los Angeles Police Department and the Pennsylvania State Police.

L.A. Co. Gets Cutting-Edge Lie Detector
KABC-TV Los Angeles, (12/08/2008), Robert Holguin

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's crime lab is testing lie detector technology that monitors the human voice. Traditional polygraph tests measure stress levels via changes in heart rate and breathing, while layered voice analysis technology measures the frequencies in a person's voice, even those inaudible to the human ear. Developers say the technology's success rate in clinical trials is 95 percent. During interviews, it alerts Law Enforcement investigators to a possible lie via computer messages such as "false statement" and "S.O.S."

Group Wants Obama to Name Officer to Fight Online Dangers
Washington Post, (12/11/2008), Kim Hart

The Family Online Safety Institute is urging President-elect Barak Obama to appoint a national safety officer to strengthen resources to protect children from cyber crime. The individual would serve under a chief
technology officer. The institute also wants $100 million a year for education and research, an annual White House summit on safety issues and a national council to coordinate federal, advocacy and industry efforts. Young people are often unaware of the information security risks posed by the mobile devices and Web sites they use. Children are vulnerable to cyber bullying, identify theft, exposure to inappropriate material and abusive messages.

Denver Airport Center Adopts National Incident Management System
PRWeb Press Release Newswire, (12/15/2008)

Hotels at Denver Airport Center will soon be using crisis response measures developed by the U.S. Department of
Homeland Security. The center will train airport hotel staff on procedures using the National Incident Management System and the Incident Command System. The training is aimed at helping staff deal with a broad range of potential emergencies hotels could face, such as fire, natural disasters, disease outbreaks, hazardous materials incidents, terrorist incidents and criminal acts. Special emphasis will be placed on interoperability with first responders.

UT Professor Refines Art of Looking Behind Walls
Austin American-Statesman, (12/14/2008), Dan Zehr

A University of Texas engineering professor is researching how to use weather radar
technology to see through walls. The research, if successful, could result in technology to help soldiers, police and rescue workers locate people behind walls or inside crumbled buildings. Hao Ling and his research team are working with Doppler radar technology to transform radar waves into understandable images of a human behind a wall, crafting a program that would simulate a variety of wave patterns created by people in motion.

KDHE, Local
Law Enforcement Partner for New DUI Instruments
WIBW.com, (12/03/2008)

Kansas authorities are using enhanced
technology to detect drunk drivers. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is making 200 of the Intoxilyzer 8000 devices available to Law Enforcement. The department's Breath Alcohol Program is responsible for the certification of agencies, instruments and officers who test drivers suspected of driving under the influence. The program has recertified or newly certified about 4,400 officers. The updated technology is more accurate, easier to use and more mobile, enabling officers to run more impaired driving checks.

`Hands Free' Cell Phones No Safer
DailyBreeze.com, (12/14/2008), Sue Doyle

Drivers using cell phones, even if hands free, are four times more likely to have an accident, according to a new report. The American Automobile Association's Foundation for Traffic Safety found that dialing and talking on cell phones detracts from drivers' attention to the road and delays drivers' reaction times by 0.23 seconds. California drivers and other jurisdictions around the United States have been banned from using hand-held cell phones behind the wheel, but there are no plans to institute a total driver cell phone ban.

AP IMPACT: More Are Getting Away With Murder
Associated Press, (11/20/2008), Karen Hawkins

A rise in drug- and gang-related killings is making it harder to solve homicides in the United States. According to FBI figures, the homicide clearance rate in the United States was 61 percent in 2007, compared with 91 percent in 1963. The clearance rate is the number of homicides solved in a year, compared with the number of killings that year. In more cases now, the killer and victim do not know each other, and witnesses are often intimated by gangs and frightened to come forward with information. Increased use of DNA
technology and other forensic techniques has been helpful in solving cold cases, but technology can't do it all and funding for cold case police units has decreased. Finding witnesses and getting them to talk is still an integral part of investigations.

Ripon Police to Hone Skills With Firearm Simulators
Modesto Bee, (12/12/2008), Leslie Albrecht

Police in Ripon, Calif., will be testing three firearms simulators for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) over the next year. The simulators show a variety of scenarios that may require an officer to fire a weapon, and will allow officers to practice "shoot-or-don't-shoot" situations. Officers who "fire" a weapon will see the path of the bullet on the simulator, testing their skills in unpredictable environments instead of on a firing range. The police department will provide feedback on the simulators to DOJ's Rural Law Enforcement
technology Center.

Prison Officials Ask for $66 million to Help Stop Cell Phone Smuggling
Austin American-Statesman (12/04/2008), Mike Ward

Texas corrections officials have proposed spending nearly $66 million on high-
technology screening equipment to thwart smuggling of contraband into the state's prisons. Under the proposal, screening equipment similar to that used in the nation's airports would be installed in the state's 20 largest maximum security prisons. An extensive surveillance camera network would also be added. The rest of the prison system's 92 facilities would receive walk-through metal detectors and parcel screening devices similar to those used in courthouses.

Comments Needed for 3 NIJ Standards

New NIJ Bomb Suit Standard

NIJ organized an expert panel to develop a bomb suit standard based on research and testing performed by the Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering (RD&E) Center. This expert panel has generated a new NIJ Bomb Suit Standard and is seeking input to the document. The opportunity to provide comments on this document is open to industry technical representatives, public safety agencies and organizations, research, development and scientific communities, and all other stakeholders and interested parties.

For more on public comments for Bomb Suits go to:

Newly Revised NIJ Hand-Held Metal Detector Standard

NIJ has completed a revision of the NIJ Hand-Held Metal Detector Standard for
Law Enforcement and Corrections and is seeking input to the document. The opportunity to provide comments on this document is open to industry technical representatives, public safety agencies and organizations, research, development and scientific communities, and all other stakeholders and interested parties.

For more on public comments for Hand-Held Metal Dectors go to:

Newly Revised NIJ Walk-Through Metal Detector Standard

NIJ has completed a revision of the NIJ Walk-Through Metal Detector Standard for
Law Enforcement and Corrections and is seeking input to the document. The opportunity to provide comments on this document is open to industry technical representatives, public safety agencies and organizations, research, development and scientific communities, and all other stakeholders and interested parties.

For more on public comments for Walk-Through Metal Detectors go to:

Monday, December 22, 2008

Tackling domestic abuse

The latest phase of a campaign to tackle domestic abuse and violence against women was launched today. The TV adverts, entitled 'I Soar', will begin on Boxing Day and highlight the help that is available to those experiencing domestic abuse.

It coincides with the unveiling of a new ACPOS and Crown Office joint protocol outlining the procedures that should be followed by Scottish
police forces and prosecution staff when dealing with cases involving domestic abuse.

The Protocol aims to increase confidence in the
criminal justice system and inform and guide victims through the process.


Children Come First: A Process Evaluation of the Nassau County Model Custody

This report presents a process evaluation of the Children Come First (CCF) Program, a problem solving matrimonial court piloted in Nassau County, New York. The program seeks to provide a more effective and child-centered response to high conflict divorce cases involving custody issues. Research suggests that traditional adversarial methods for resolving these cases may increase stress and vulnerability for parents and children alike, and may have negative effects on children’s educational outcomes and emotional and behavioral functioning (Ayoub, Deutsch and Maraganore 1999). CCF attempts to alleviate these problems by separating and resolving the custody components of the divorce prior to addressing the financial issues. By dedicating a specially trained judge and two specialized staff to implement early screening, triage, conflict resolution, and service linkages, CCF aims to reduce animosity, maintain the well-being of children and parents, and move cases to resolution within a faster, child-focused timeframe. Findings from this evaluation indicate that CCF has been successful in meeting these goals and has mitigated conflict between litigants, expedited custody resolutions and led to satisfactory outcomes for litigants, attorneys and stakeholders


Strategies for New York City Teens Influencing Public Policy

This report describes findings from a study that sought to understand how young people can become important players in the policymaking process. Youth civic engagement literature shows that there are low levels of civic and political participation among American youth, in part because there are few policy structures to support youth in community governance. Many youth programs that work to influence public policy have been designed in response to this, but evaluation of these programs has focused on the impact of participation on the individual youth themselves – their knowledge of a particular issue, self esteem, communication skills, and perceptions of self-efficacy – as opposed to measuring the impact that a particular youth campaign had on policy.

In an attempt to understand what the most effective strategies are for youth having a voice in public policy, the study focused on the supply and demand for youth input. On the supply side, we examined several
New York City programs that work to increase the voice of inner city youth in policy in order to determine what have proven to be effective strategies for influencing policy. On the demand side, we sought to determine what policymakers want to know from youth and how the voice of young people can most effectively be heard and respected. The findings of the study will be used to inform the Youth justice Board, an after-school program of the Center for Court Innovation, that seeks to influence public policy related to juvenile justice issues.


The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children in New York City

Few crimes are more abhorrent than the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC), yet few are more challenging for communities to address. The United States Department of Justice estimates that the number of children currently involved in prostitution, child pornography, and trafficking may be anywhere between 100,000 and three million (ECPAT 2005). Since these children are often difficult to locate, reluctant to acknowledge their age and exploitation, and potentially engaged by multiple institutions that do not routinely share information (criminal justice, child welfare, educational, and others), it is extremely difficult to assess accurately the true nature and extent of the problem.

In response, the National Institute of Justice provided funding to study the problem in two large metropolitan areas, New York City and
Atlanta. These cities were both believed to have a sizable CSEC population, and both had recently implemented demonstration projects funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). A research team from the Center for Court Innovation and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice collaborated on the New York City study, and a team from Georgia State University led the Atlanta study. This executive summary reports the emergent themes and findings from New York City.


Harlem Justice Study

This study examines the impact of the Harlem Community Justice Center’s housing court, a community-based housing court that attempts to achieve speedier and more durable outcomes in landlord-tenant disputes. The primary objective was to determine the perceptions of pro se tenants (i.e., those who represent themselves without an attorney) whose cases are heard in Harlem about their court experience. Also examined are the perceptions of pro se tenants whose cases are heard in New York City’s centralized housing court located in southern Manhattan (“downtown housing court”). The study is based on 343 in-person interviews conducted between January and May 2007 both in Harlem and the downtown housing court and on direct observation of 406 court appearances across the two sites.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Inquiry on Young Black People and the Criminal Justice System

The House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee (the Committee) published the report of its Inquiry on Young Black People and the Criminal Justice System (CJS)1 on Friday 15 June 2007. The Inquiry looked at the relationship between young black people and the CJS, focusing on the reasons for their over-representation in the system.

The Government’s response to the Committee’s Report was published on 18 October 20072 and set out a detailed response to each of the Report’s recommendations. The paper included a commitment to publish detailed operating proposals and a governance framework3 for delivery of the cross-Government commitments made in the main response. This framework was published, accompanied by a Written Ministerial Statement(WMS)4 laid by the Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor, on 13 December 2007.

The WMS and the governance framework committed us to reporting progress annually to the Committee. This report is the first such Annual Report.

Addressing unfair disproportionality requires sustained, cross-governmental action to tackle the socio-economic, cultural and CJS issues that may impact adversely on young black peoples’ lives and make them more susceptible to contact with
Criminal Justice services. Outlined in this report are the strategies and activities that will make, and are, making a difference. These are the building blocks that will deliver real changes on the ground. We are determined to ensure that we can demonstrate to communities that our work is having a positive impact on the lives of young black people and to do this we must first and foremost improve the data that we collect on their experiences of the CJS. This report outlines the significant work we are undertaking to improve data collection and use. That in isolation will not change outcomes but will inform and underpin the activities that will.

For the first time, the Government’s public service agreement (PSA) targets require departments to work together to deliver the socio-economic and cultural shifts needed to improve the life chances of all young people. PSA 24 (Deliver a more effective, transparent and responsive
Criminal Justice system for victims and the public) requires that Local Criminal Justice Boards (LCJBs) look critically at the data that tracks the experience of Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) people in the CJS in their area and to implement action plans to eradicate unfair disproportionality where it is found.

This report updates the Committee on the progress we are making on the range of commitments we set out in our response to the Committee’s recommendations. Whilst the focus of the Inquiry and report is on young black people in the CJS, we also recognise that many of the recommendations are equally applicable to other over-represented groups in the CJS.

To make it easier for the reader to track progress, we have used the same structure in this report as in our response to the Committee’s original report. Each recommendation or conclusion from the Committee’s report is identified (with its paragraph reference) and is accompanied by an update on progress.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

BJA Drug Court Solicitation

BJA Drug Court Solicitation
Opportunity Number: BJA-2009-1979
CFDA Number: 16.585

Drug courts help reduce recidivism and substance abuse among nonviolent offenders and increase an offender's likelihood of successful rehabilitation through early, continuous, and intense judicially supervised treatment, mandatory periodic drug testing, community supervision, and appropriate sanctions and other habilitation services. A drug court can be a specially designed court calendar or docket as well as a specialized court program. Drug courts funded through the Bureau of
Justice Assistance's (BJA) Drug Court Discretionary Grant Program are required by law to involve nonviolent offenders and must implement an adult drug court based on the BJA and National Association of Drug Court Professionals' publication: Defining Drug Courts: The Key Components. Implementation grants may also serve DUI/DWI offenders. The FY 2008 solicitation offers three drug court grant categories: Implementation, Enhancement, and Statewide.

Award ceiling of $350,000.

For Implementation and Enhancement Grants, applicants are limited to states, state and local courts, counties, units of local government, and Indian tribal governments, acting directly or through other public or private entities. For Statewide Grants, applicants are limited to state agencies.

January 29, 2009.


Chris Casto at (202) 353-7193 or

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fellowship – Crime in America

The John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York is seeking submissions from journalists for stories and reporting projects on criminal justice problems facing the United States. Working journalists are invited to submit a proposal to the college, which will award 15 fellowships and will pay for the winners to attend a two-day conference in New York City in February.

We are seeking applications from writing or broadcasting journalists in a variety of beats (education, politics, health, crime, courts, etc.) to submit project/research ideas based on the major theme of the upcoming conference: key
criminal justice challenges facing the nation. The topics could include: crime & punishment (sentencing; prisons); science & crime (forensic issues, etc.), issues linking crime with environment, the economy, urban affairs or education trends; race and criminal justice; juvenile justice; homeland security and civil liberties; politics of crime; new crime prevention and policing strategies, etc.


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Combustible Dust: The Threat to First Responders

On December 19, 2008, Conversations with Heroes at the Watering Hole will feature a discussion with John Astad and Bob LaPlante on preventing and mitigating fire and explosion from combustible dust. According to OSHA, “any combustible material (and some materials normally considered noncombustible) can burn rapidly when in a finely divided form. If such a dust is suspended in air in the right concentration, it can become explosive.

The force from such an explosion can cause employee deaths, injuries, and destruction of entire buildings. Such incidents have killed scores of employees and injured hundreds over the past few decades.” As an example, “In January 2003, devastating fires and explosions destroyed a North Carolina pharmaceutical plant that manufactured rubber drug-delivery components. Six employees were killed and 38 people, including two
firefighters, were injured. The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB), an independent Federal agency charged with investigating chemical incidents, issued a final report concluding that an accumulation of a combustible polyethylene dust above the suspended ceilings fueled the explosion. The explosion severely damaged the plant and caused minor damage to nearby businesses, a home, and a school.”

Program Date: December 19, 2008
Program Time: 2100 hours, Pacific
Topic: Combustible Dust: The Threat to First Responders
Listen Live:

About the Guests
John Astad is Director and Research Analyst of the Combustible Dust Policy Institute. At the Institute, John tracks and researches combustible dust related fires and explosions. The results of this business intelligence data can be utilized by a myriad of stakeholders in the public and private sectors in developing cost effective strategies in assessing risk concerning combustible dust hazards in the workplace. John Astad holds a BS Business and Public Administration from the University of Houston-Clear Lake, with a major in Environmental Management.

Bob LaPlante is the General Manager at United Training Specialists (Phoenix, AZ). He has 29 years of power plant experience in Engineering, Fire Protection and Emergency Response Planning. His responsibility have included developing emergency response plans for power generating plants with regards to meeting OSHA, NFPA and DHS regulations and standards; and, developing emergency response power plant training, facility pre-plans, standard operating procedures and fire protection equipment maintenance and training programs for plant Emergency Response Team members. Bob LaPlante is a member of the NFPA, Edison Electric Institute’s Fire Committee, International Association of Fire Chiefs, the Arizona Fire Chiefs Association and the Arizona Fire Training Association.

About the Watering Hole
The Watering Hole is
police slang for a location cops go off-duty to blow off steam and talk about work and life. Sometimes funny; sometimes serious; but, always interesting.

About the Host
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles
Police Department for 24 years. He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant. He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton; and, has completed his doctoral course work. Raymond E. Foster has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and Fresno; and is currently a Criminal Justice Department chair, faculty advisor and lecturer with the Union Institute and University. He has experience teaching upper division courses in law enforcement, public policy, Criminal Justice technology and leadership. Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One. He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in law enforcement.

Listen, call, join us at the Watering Hole.

Program Contact Information
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Public Safety Technology in the News

Experimental Shoe-Print Database Sees the Soles of Criminals
Wired, (11/20/2008), Ryan Singel

computer science professor at the University of Buffalo is conducting research to enhance computational forensics for shoeprints. Sargur Srihari is building a search engine containing thousands of shoe images from Internet shoe sites. When complete, the system would allow law enforcement forensics units to submit a photo of a shoe print from a crime scene to quickly obtain the gender, size and brand of shoe. The professor and his graduate students initially developed a shoe tread database containing more than 10,000 pairs of men's shoes. Students then stepped in powder to create images of the soles. Srihari is working on algorithms to identify likely matches for the images for partial foot prints. The work is being done with a $300,000 grant from the Office of Justice Programs' National Institute of Justice.

Prisons Beefing Up Teleconferencing to Save Money
Associated Press via Hartford Courant, (11/23/2008)

Connecticut is the latest state to increase use of courtroom teleconferencing to improve public safety and save money. Connecticut finished installing teleconferencing equipment in all of its 18 correctional facilities in October. During that month about 150 inmates used the system to participate in hearings on parole, civil and family and immigration and customs matters. Corrections officials say using teleconferencing spares them from having to move inmates between the jail and hearings. Other states that are using teleconferences between judges and inmates include Kansas, Louisiana, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Caroline, South Dakota and Tennessee.

RISC: Repository for Individuals of Special Concern Rapid Search Functionality
FBI, (11/2008)

The FBI's Next Generation Identification (NGI) Repository for Individuals of Special Concern (RISC) rapid search functionality system will provide officers with important identifying fingerprint information. When this new system becomes functional, during a vehicle stop an officer could take a minimum of two or a maximum of 10 fingerprint images from an individual using a mobile device and submit it through a participating state's identification bureau to FBI RISC. RISC in turn performs a limited repository search of persons of special interest, such as wanted persons, known or suspected terrorists or sexual offender registry subjects. The goal of NGI is to process this submission within seconds, and the expectation is to respond with a red, yellow or green flag. A red response means a viable candidate has been identified and the response includes category of hit, FBI number and master name. A yellow response means the level of confidence that a candidate is viable is bel! ow the level required for a positive match, and green means the search did not identify a viable candidate. RISC will provide
law enforcement with rapid/mobile identification services that quickly assess the potential threat level of an encountered individual. The FBI is currently prototyping this capability. Deployment of RISC will be dependent on capabilities of individual state and local agencies. For more information visit the FBI Web site at www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/ngi.htm or call (304) 625-5590.

Texas Prison Officials Plan Cell Phone Jamming Test
American Statesman, (11/26/08), Mike Ward

Texas wants to be the next state to test cell phone jamming
technology in prisons. Prison inmates can use cell phones to commit criminal activities while incarcerated. Jamming prevents cell tower transmissions from reaching the phone. South Carolina recently tested jamming technology in one of its prisons and wants to conduct a pilot program to test the technology further. Federal law, however, allows federal agencies to obtain authority to jam cell signals, but states and localities are prohibited from doing so by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Local authorities are working with members of Congress and the FCC to determine if it is possible to revise the law.

High-Tech Radio Microwaves to Connect
law enforcement in State
Sidney Herald, (11/18/2008), Louisa Barber

Public safety agencies in Montana have new tools to communicate easily across the state. As part of the Interoperability Montana Project, which has been underway for several years, authorities recently began using high-tech radio microwave
technology to communicate securely using encrypted two-way radios. The state is also working on developing an interoperable mobile data system in cooperation with the state highway patrol and department of transportation.

TSA Tests Boarding Pass
Security Directory News, (11/25/2008), Leischen Stelter

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has completed a test of an automated system that encrypts personal passenger information on a boarding pass. The Laser Data Command's PassPro system uses images, fingerprints and documentation such as a driver's license or passport to confirm passenger identity. The information is encrypted and compressed into a barcode and printed onto the boarding pass, which can be scanned by airport security. The system is designed to improve security and speed passengers through the process. The system was tested at the Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport using
law enforcement officers as a test group. Outcome of the testing is confidential.

North Carolina
law enforcement Finds Success in Tracking Crime Suspects
PR Newswire, (12/02/2008)

North Carolina has joined 11 other states that use a multijurisdictional computerized system that allows
law enforcement agencies to search for criminals nationwide with a touch of a keyboard. Justice Xchange users have access to booking records, warrants and other information from law enforcement agencies in other states. The system can also be used to locate missing persons and witnesses. Other states currently using the system are Texas, New York, Florida, Washington, Kentucky, Utah, Arkansas, Indiana, South Dakota, Maryland and Arizona.

Police Setting Up Database on Gangs
Boston Globe, (11/30/2008), Jay Atkinson

law enforcement agencies will soon have access to a collaborative database containing information on violent street criminals, especially street gangs. The MassGangs database project was developed with a $1.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Justice and will have information on a suspect's associates, criminal history and gang affiliation. Data can be shared immediately as it becomes available. Officers will fill out a form that assigns a point value to a suspect's gang-related criteria. Point values are assigned for categories such as "self admission" and "known group tattoo/marking." A score of 10 or more points will register a suspect as a member of a gang. Officials plan to launch the MassGangs database in January 2009.

Johns Hopkins Tests Gunshot Detection System,
Police Respond
Security Director News, (11/25/2008), Leischen Stelter

Johns Hopkins University is participating in a gunshot location pilot program. The SECURES Detection System has been installed using 93 sensors mounted on streetlights and buildings surrounding the university's 140-acre campus in Baltimore, Md. If the sensors detect a gunshot, a signal displaying the location is transmitted to the university's communications center, which notifies Baltimore
Police to respond. The city of Baltimore will be evaluating the technology during the pilot to decide if it should be used in other parts of town.

Schools to Use Spray for Drug Detection
WSMV Nashville, (11/25/2008), Jonathan Martin

Metropolitan Nashville public schools have decided to use D4D spray to detect illegal drugs. The equipment for the test will be free through a partnership with the Office of
Justice Programs' National Institute of Justice. The test can detect more than 10 different drugs based on a color chart. School officials plan to use the spray to test students' desks, cars, book bags and pockets. In the past the schools have used a dog to search for drugs. Officials decided to begin using the spray because of the number of students being busted with marijuana and cocaine.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Cyber Security Workshop: Emerging Trends in Crime & Attackers

Emerging Trends in Crime and Attackers in Cyber Security Workshop - How Criminal Groups Impact US Businesses and Government

Feb 18-19, 2009 in Arlington, VA

About this workshop:
This workshop will concentrate on information regarding the organized (and not so organized)
criminal groups and how they impact business and government organizations. Topics will include: terrorism, activists, hackers/phishers, organized crime, child pornographers, and fraud rings. A discussion on how these groups operate, who they target, how they fund their operations, and how they cross-communicate will be included. The discussion and workshop will also include how to stay on top of these threats and design mitigation strategies to better protect your organization.

What you will Learn:
Who are the threats in the cyber-world and what are they doing
An understanding of the criminals’ sources, methods and operations
Mitigation Strategies – what can the organization do to combat these threats
Anticipation of Future modus operandi – what will be the next move for these
criminal groups and how can organizations decrease their vulnerabilities

Registration Fee:
Government attendees: $699
Small Business (less than 100 employees): $749 per person
Industry (includes government contractors): $799 per person

More Information

Police Author Published in Overseas Text Book

December 5, 2008 (San Dimas, CA) In November 2008, the ICFAI Business School Research Center (Chennai, India) published Employee Morale: Concepts and Cases. Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA is the author of Chapter 12: Morale: Whose Job is it Anyway?

The ICFAI said of the book, the initiative “is to publish a series of books in the areas of finance, management and allied areas with a special focus on emerging and frontier areas.” Foster, the co-author of
Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style, said that he was contacted by the ICFAI University in the Summer of 2007 about using an earlier article on employee morale as the basis for a chapter in the book. Foster continued, “we were just in the finishing stages of production on the leadership book when the Indian University contacted me. I liked two things about the proposal – the subject is particularity interesting to me and it was an opportunity to reach out to an additional 900 million readers.”

Foster noted that while the book has only recently reached US shores, it has been available in India since August 2008. Foster said, “I hadn’t seen a copy, but when I began to get a lot of email from India from students, academics and business professional about the book, I knew it must have been published.”

Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA is the author of books subjects of policing,
technology and leadership. His most recent book, Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style has been adopted by several universities for course work and other organizations for employee development. He is also a part-time faculty advisor, lecture and the Criminal Justice Department chair at the Union Institute and University. Raymond can be reached through www.pokerleadership.com

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Broken Wings Network

The Broken Wings Network partners with law enforcement, families of missing adults and victims of domestic violence to advocate for change.
Current programs and initiatives include:
Support for families of missing adults
Empowerment for battered women
Prison/Correctional inmate education
Reforming of DNA and missing adult protocol laws nationwide
Resources and publications for schools, law enforcment, mental health care providers and families
Public Speaking
To learn more about Becky and my story please visit these websites:

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

New Online Event: Sexual Assault on College Campuses

December 11, 2008: 2-4 pm (EST)
Online event. Registration required, and free of charge.

This event is the last of four in the Series on
Sexual Violence, sponsored by the Government Innovators Network and the National Institute of Justice. Additional event topics include sexual violence from an international perspective, sexual violence and evidence collection, and residency restrictions for sex offenders. Ample time will be allocated for audience Q&A.

Did you know that more than 50% of college sexual assault cases involve alcohol? Despite media perceptions, date rape drugs are rarely used. Schools vary widely in how they comply with requirements to report and respond to sexual victimization. Many schools need guidance on how to handle security, report crime data, and ensure victim rights.

This event will examine the prevalence, nature, and reporting of various types of sexual assault experienced by university students, including those perpetrated by "undetected" rapists, and will discuss evidence-based prevention strategies. The discussion will be moderated by Marnie Shiels, Attorney Advisor for the Office on Violence against Women. The panel includes:

Chris Krebs - Senior Research Social Scientist, RTI International
David Lisak -
Forensic Consulting, Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts, Boston
Dorothy Edwards - Director, The Violence Intervention and Prevention Center, University of Kentucky


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Public Safety Technology in the News

Homeland Security and Justice Departments Providing More Info to Local Officers
The National Ledger, (11/16/2008), Jim Kouri

The U.S. Departments of
Homeland Security (DHS) and Justice (DOJ) have enhanced their biometric systems to improve information sharing with state and local agencies. The changes improve interoperability between the Automated Biometric Identification System (IDENT) and the Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS). To target criminal aliens, a new database link can automatically check the criminal and immigration history of individuals incarcerated by local and state law enforcement. IDENT and IAFIS interoperability is key to Secure Communities, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's comprehensive plan to identify criminal aliens in local communities. Seven sites nationwide have participated in a pilot version of interoperability between the DHS and DOJ databases. The Customs agency plans to expand this capability to more than 50 state and local law enforcement agencies by next spring.

Police Car Scans License Plates, Sniffs Out Bombs
ABC News, (11/15/2008), Patrik Jonnsson

law enforcement professionals attending the International Association of Police Chiefs' annual meeting in November got their first look at a "purpose-built" Police Car. The Carbon E7 is a 300-horspower car that runs on biodiesel fuel. It is equipped with sensors for weapons of mass destruction and automatic license-plate scanners. Carbon Motors would need to sell about 20,000 cars to U.S. law enforcement agencies to warrant its proposed 2010 production run. In designing the vehicle, the company included ideas gleaned from law enforcement officers, including a "hoseable" rear seat, an extra-wide driver's seat into a cockpit-style front compartment and side emergency lights to increase visibility and safety. The vehicle sticker price has not yet been announced.

Improved Measurements Could Mean Safer, More Reliable Electroshock Weapons
ScienceDaily, (11/14/2008)

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) are working toward a standard method for assessing the electrical output of electroshock weapons. In recent years, conducted-energy devices such as stun guns have become popular among law enforcement agencies as less-lethal weapons. Questions have been raised about whether the devices can contribute to or cause death in some individuals. Groups such as Amnesty International have called for guidelines that include "threshold exposures," which are the minimum level that would incapacitate different groups of people without putting them at risk for injury or death. However, current reports on the voltage the weapons deliver are inconsistent. NIST scientists have developed methods for calibrating the high-voltage and current measurement probes used by industry. More research is needed, but eventually NIST will work with government agencies and the law enforcement community to standardize the method that ! will facilitate establishment of user guidelines.

Crime Cartography
The Diamondback, (11/11/2008), Kyle Goon

Police at the University of Maryland will soon be able to directly contribute crime data to the crime-mapping Web site www.UCrime.com. UCrime relies on police departments, newspapers, user reports and university incident logs to find crime data and plot it on a Google map. Crimes are classified by category and include descriptions of what happened. University police want to upload the university's crime information for crime mapping purposes.

Californian Prisons Employ Robotic Scouts
Gizmag, (11/04/2008)

California's Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has agreed to test remote-controlled surveillance robots. Roughly 250 of the 1.2-pound Recon Scouts are used by
law enforcement agencies in the United States and military personnel in Iraq. Ten robots will be tested in California prisons. During hostile prison situations, the robots can be thrown into place or fired from a tear-gas launcher. They can survive a 30-foot drop onto concrete and can be operated from up to 100 feet away using a handheld controller, which displays footage from the robot. The robots cost $6,000 ($9,000 with an infrared camera).

States Complete Radiation Detection Drill
Global Security Newswire, (11/07/2008)

Nine states and the District of Columbia recently completed a practice exercise to test their ability to cope with a nuclear or radiological attack. The exercise, which ran several days, tested the coordination capabilities in the southeastern region of the United States. The exercise was the end result of the Southeast Transportation Corridor Pilot Program, which emphasized training, improved communications
Technology and emergency protocols to improve regional nuclear detection and response capabilities.

BMV Joins Identity Theft Fight
Indianapolis Star, (11/07/2008), Gretchen Becker

An Indiana agency is testing face-recognition
Technology for driver's licenses to help fight identity theft. The Bureau of Motor Vehicles will test the Technology at three of its Indianapolis branches as part of a pilot program. A $2.4 million software program scans the millions of photos in the database to determine if a photo is on a different credential with a different name. The software looks for matching points on the face, such as the distance between pupils, and compares those to other images with the same data points. The system reports any suspect names and faces. About 20 states are using the Technology.

Wichita Falls Unified Command Post is Ready for Operation
Texomas, (11/14/08), Sara DiMuro

The city of
Wichita Falls, Texas, has a new rolling command center to help cope up close with long-term situations such as standoffs, environmental hazards and weather disasters. The $400,000 center, which was funded with federal grant money, is available for use across north Texas. The unit has full telephone and dispatch capability, infrared night vision and a camera mounted on the top.

Technology in Bonneville Co. Will Help Find Missing Children
KPVI-TV, (10/31/08), Andrew Del Greco

The Bonneville County Sheriff's Office in Idaho is the latest jurisdiction to obtain iris scan
Technology as a tool to locate lost children. The sheriff's office will share the Technology with other agencies in the state. Should an adult or child go missing, if their eyes have been scanned their identification can be sent digitally across the United States. Young children may not know their names or phone numbers and can be identified with an iris scan. Thirty-five states currently use the Technology.

Green Prisons Farm, Recycle to Save Energy, Money
Associated Press, (11/01/08), Phuong Le

Corrections facilities are discovering the benefits of going green. Prison officials find that using inmates to keep bees, recycle, and grow organic vegetables reduces costs, lowers the impact on the environment and provides inmates with new skills. Agencies are replacing old appliances with energy-efficient ones and installing solar panels. Because of a water shortage this summer, inmates in the North Carolina's prison system converted 50-gallon pickle barrels into small cisterns to capture rainwater. The green practices instituted by the Cedar Creek Corrections Center in Washington state has resulted in the facility using 250,000 fewer gallons of water a year and saving $6,000 to $8,400 annually on garbage bills.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Call for Presenters: National Law Enforcement & Corrections Technology Center

10th Annual Innovative Technologies for
Community Corrections Conference
June 1-3, 2009
San Diego, CA

Is your agency involved in a
technology project that is worthy of attention? Would you like to be a part of the 2009 Innovative Technologies for Community Corrections Conference agenda? The NLECTC is pleased to issue a call for presenters for the 2009 conference.

Presentations should relate to the implementation of
technology to solve an operational problem and/or management issues related to technology. Conference workshops are 90 minutes in length and are generally organized in four tracks:

Electronic Monitoring
Drug and Alcohol Testing
Management Issues - (e.g. Training, Officer Safety, Communications, etc.)

Submission Guidelines
Persons interested in submitting a proposal for consideration should forward the following:

Workshop title
A clear, concise, accurate, description of the workshop
Complete contact information for each speaker
Brief biography of each of the speakers
Audio/Visual requirements for the presentation
Primary contact person for the workshop

Presentation proposals may be e-mailed no later than December 31, 2008 to:
Joe Russo, Assistant Director
Law Enforcement & Corrections technology Center
E-mail: jrusso@du.edu

The NLECTC will provide for the expenses for all speakers (up to two per workshop) selected to present a workshop at the 2009 conference to include airfare, one nights lodging, ground transportation and per diem. In addition, conference registration fees will be waived. NLECTC will not cover expenses for presenters representing vendors.

Soldiers Treat Ailing Iraqis

By Army Staff Sgt. James Hunter

Special to American Forces Press Service

Nov. 13, 2008 - When Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, first arrived in Iraq in November 2007, they had many things in mind to help to improve the lives of the citizens in Rathwaniyah, just on the outskirts of Baghdad. The soldiers wanted to provide medical assistance, but there was no clinic in the area available to the Iraqi citizens. So the soldiers made it their mission to establish one.

"It's a farm area, very rural, that has some sectarian division," said Army Capt. Jerry Braverman, a physician assistant from Roseburg, Ore., with the 1st Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment. "When we got here, our mission was to establish this new clinic next to the school and try to set Dr. Abass up for success to be able to independently work free of [the] Ministry of Health, with the long-term goal of getting Ministry of Health doctors and nurses to come out here and assist with the care for the area."

In the meantime, while the facility was being built, the "Top Gun" troops pushed out into the area and held six combined medical engagements, working side by side with Iraqi physicians to treat ailing Iraqis.

At the last medical operation in Rathwaniyah on Nov. 8, soldiers and Iraqi doctors treated about 350 Iraqis in the new medical facility. They treated a variety of illnesses such as upper respiratory infections, sore throats, skin rashes, muscle aches and asthma, Braverman said, and even were able to take care of a few minor tooth problems.

Braverman has been active in engaging the Iraqi physicians, and said he has found these medical engagements rewarding on many fronts.

"For me, it's very rewarding, especially with the kids," he said. "The kids know you by name; they know exactly who you are."

Recently, he said, one child approached him and said when he grows up he wants to be a doctor just like him. Braverman said the soldiers are having a great impact on the children, the sheiks and the local council, who all appreciate what they have done to aid the community.

This medical engagement also provided an opportunity for the soldiers' replacements, from the 1st Infantry Division's 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, to meet the Iraqi physicians and see first-hand the medical problems many of the citizens face.

Army Capt. Quintin Treadway, a physician assistant from Osceola, Neb., with the 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, said he is looking forward to the next year and engaging many of Iraqi physicians in the area.

He wants to continue these medical engagements, he said. "I think it engenders a lot of trust within the local people as they see us out there to help them," he explained, "and I think it's the most visible and hands-on way of engendering that trust, because we are actually placing hands on to heal someone. [Medical engagements help to] develop rapport with the local population."

Just as the Top Gun troops have done for the last year, Treadway said he is keen to treat medical conditions and help the Iraqis avoid future ailments through preventive medicine. As his medics hit the streets daily on patrols, he said, he is eager to have them do all they can to help the people, no matter how severe the case.

"I expect my medics ... to assist with what they can with the children out on the streets," he said. "A medic told me the other day a young kid had come up with a pretty good-size cut on his hand, and he bandaged it there on the spot."

Treadway said he wants to get the Ministry of Health more involved with the clinic by providing new equipment, doctors and nurses or supplies, because the clinic plays a vital role within the community.

The clinic, which Braverman describes as one of the best facilities in the area, is treating up to a dozen people a day, on average. It has proved successful since its opening, he said, as Abass, the doctor running the clinic, now can purchase his own supplies in addition to what the government normally provides. However, Braverman said, the clinic is limited in what it can do for the Iraqi people.

Abass said he hopes to add a lab and an X-ray machine, but in the meantime will do all he can with what he has to ensure the good health of his neighbors.

(Army Staff Sgt. James Hunter serves in Multinational Division Baghdad with the 101st Airborne Division's 2nd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs Office.)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Interdiction Seizures: Dope Vs. Cash

When teaching interdiction I am often asked the question about “which side of the highway do I work, the dope side or the money side?” For those reading that are unfamiliar with this let’s explain the phrase. Interdiction officers typically work a major highway that is a drug route. For example, in Texas, dopers travel southbound into the state from northern states carrying large amounts of cash for the dope purchase, either in Texas or Mexico, depending on where there connection is. This is what we refer to as the “money side” of the highway.


Friday, November 07, 2008


This is a REQUEST FOR INFORMATION (RFI) only. The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is developing an equipment standard for vehicular digital recording systems used by law enforcement to record events in and around patrol cars. NIJ provides objective, independent, evidence-based knowledge and tools to enhance the administration of Justice and public safety. NIJ does not intend to award a contract on the basis of this RFI or to otherwise pay for information received in response to this RFI.

This RFI is issued solely to solicit technical input from Industry (i.e., manufacturers and testing laboratories) for consideration by NIJ as it develops a performance standard for vehicular digital recording systems. No product demonstrations or marketing presentations will be scheduled as a result of this research/information gathering announcement. Specifically, through this RFI, NIJ seeks to gather test methodologies and performance requirements that Industry representatives feel should be included in the standard currently being developed, along with the rationale for these suggestions. These include test methodologies and performance requirements that address, but are not limited to, camera and audio device functions; safety; and recording, transfer, and security of video and audio. If a test method being suggested is currently in use, NIJ is interested in learning why that particular method and applicable parameters were chosen and what information the test results provide.

Responses to this RFI should be submitted no later than November 24, 2008 in order to ensure full consideration. The narrative section of your response (summary of recommendations) should not exceed 7 double-spaced pages. Company information, abstract, table of contents, charts, figures, appendices, and data and information supporting the recommendations, do not count toward the 7-page limit for the narrative section. Responses should be sent via overnight express mail or e-mail attachment to the contact person below, and include the vendor's company name, address, point of contact name, e-mail address, and telephone number. Any proprietary or company confidential information provided in the response must be clearly marked on every applicable page of the response provided.

Point of Contact: Casandra Robinson
Mailing Address: NIJ, 810 7th Street NW, Washington DC 20531
Email Address: Casandra.robinson@usdoj.gov

Communicating Across State and County Lines: The Piedmont Regional Voice over Internet Protocol Project

To officers in the Danville (Va.) Police Department, sometimes it seemed like suspects knew a little too much geography. When being pursued, suspects would head straight for the state line, and in just a few minutes, speed into North Carolina. Because of incompatible radio systems, Danville officers unfortunately had no way to communicate directly with their colleagues across the border, complicating efforts to arrest the suspects.

To fix the problem and help improve public safety, the City of Danville teamed up with surrounding law enforcement agencies — the Caswell County Sheriff's Office in North Carolina, the
North Carolina State Highway Patrol, the Pittsylvania County Sheriff's Office in Virginia and the Virginia State Police — to use Internet technology to bridge the gaps in their communications systems


Cold Cases: Resources for Agencies, Resolution for Families

It is 1974. The body of an 8-year-old girl who has been sexually assaulted has been found in a wooded area next to the park. The girl was last seen alive earlier that morning, leaving her house for school. Fast forward to 2008. The case file and evidence sit in storage at a local police department. The case — never solved — continues to take a back seat to more recent cases. The family of the little girl waits and wonders if there will ever be resolution.

Every day across the U.S., investigations slow or stop completely, and cases go "cold." Police agencies often lack the manpower, equipment and funding to support units dedicated to investigating and analyzing these cold cases. Homicide and sexual assault units are backlogged with active cases. Consequently, cold cases rarely get the attention they deserve.


'Internationalizing' Criminal Justice Research

When the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) set out to develop updated standards for portable X-ray equipment used by bomb squads, British scientists and engineers did most of the work. "Explosives have no nationality," said Chris Tillery, associate deputy director for science and technology at NIJ. “Most countries have the same concerns.”

Because NIJ has close contact with the British Home Office Scientific Development Branch, officials on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean knew that American and British
law enforcement agencies were independently working on similar projects. This contact made it possible for the American effort to leverage the considerable experience and expertise developed by the British over decades. The collaboration is a good example of how international efforts can ultimately help U.S. state and local law enforcement agencies.


Thursday, November 06, 2008


By James H. Lilley

Eugene A. Marriott raped, sodomized and brutally beat a woman outside a Best Western Motel in Fairfax City on January 14, 2006. He was pulling up his pants, with the woman still lying at his feet, when police arrived and arrested him. An eyewitness to the crime said he was in an adjacent parking lot and saw Marriott standing over top of the woman and, “just pounding away on her.” He yelled at Marriott, but he continued his attack on the woman.

Marriott, who is married, is also a minister in The Ebenezer African Methodist Episcopal Church in Fort Washington. After his arrest he told detectives investigating the case that he’d dated the woman and what happened on January 14th was simply a matter of their sadomasochistic role-playing. The woman, however, told detectives they’d broken up weeks earlier. But, during the course of his interview with police he admitted that even if it had been role-playing that what he did that night was wrong.

Marriott entered a plea to charges of abduction with intent to defile and unlawful wounding, with the abduction with intent charge carrying a minimum sentence of 20 years. With his agreement to plead to those charges, prosecutors dismissed the rape and sodomy counts. But during trial proceedings prosecutors amended the charges to simple adduction, which carried no minimum sentence and a maximum of 10 years. They also added two misdemeanor sexual battery charges, to which Marriott agreed to plead guilty.

By pleading guilty to the two misdemeanor charges he escaped having to register as a sex offender, which would have been required by the “intent to defile” charge.

Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Toni Fay presented the case and said that what happened that night was
criminal behavior, and showed photos of the victim to Circuit Court Judge Stanley Klein. Pictures offered into evidence showed that the victim had sustained cuts and bruises over her body from her lower legs to the top of her head. The victim said that she’d been beaten with fists and a belt buckle, raped and sexually assaulted. But, according to the Washington Post, Fay concluded her case by saying, “I wish Mr. Marriott well. I hope that his wife takes him back. I am very glad to see his church and his community are still supporting him.”

I’m surprised that she didn’t invite him out for dinner and drinks. Perhaps I missed something in the translation of all of this, but I was under the impression that Eugene A. Marriott was the accused in this instance, not the victim. Yet, it seems that the Fairfax County Prosecutor’s Office, or at least Toni Fay, went out of her way to assist him in eluding prosecution for the most serious crimes.

Marriott’s capacity as a minister at the Ebenezer AME Church doesn’t entitle him to preferential treatment when he stands accused of a serious crime, or any crime for that matter. He said he was sorry, but showed no emotion when he apologized. He went on to say that he’d lost everything he’d worked his whole life for, but continued to have the support of his church and his wife. The victim admitted she had dated him for about three months and their break up had been amicable. Although the victim dated her attacker for a time and agreed to meet him to go dancing on the night of the attack, it doesn’t qualify him for leniency. Indeed the court saw otherwise and sentenced him to only 16 months for his crimes immediately after sentencing two burglars to 18 and 20 months in prison. First, the prosecutor slaps the victim across the face by wishing her attacker well, and then the court puts its stamp of approval on the slap with a kick in the stomach and a sentence of only 16 months for a violent crime. Yet, Judge Klein said Marriott’s behavior wouldn’t be tolerated.

I don’t understand how a brutal beating and rape warrants less time in prison than a property crime. What was the court saying not only to the victim in this case, but also to the thousands of victims of rape and sexual assault across the country? Was the court sending a message that forcibly violating a woman’s body will get a suspect less jail time than a break in of a home or business?

Like it or not, there are many times when there is no real justice for the victim in the judicial system. But in this case far more went on behind the scenes than anyone was aware of. Toni Fay reduced the charges without consulting with the victim, the detective who investigated the allegations or her boss, Commonwealth’s Attorney Robert F. Horan.

The victim had already agreed with a deal struck by the prosecutor that Marriott would plead guilty to abduction with intent to defile and should have been consulted by Fay prior to any change in that deal. According to Mr. Horan, and anyone familiar with the justice system knows contacting the victim regarding any changes to the agreement is rule number one. Horan said the original plea agreement made sense and that lawyers who have defended accused rapists agreed, as did the victim in this instance.

Some time before the hearing, Marriott’s attorney, Bobby Stafford, contacted Fay and told her that Marriott did not want to have to register as a sex offender, which would have been required under the “intent to defile” charge. Fay was then in touch with Judge Klein, telling him that she and Stafford had been in contact to resolve the matter, but without informing him of just what that matter was. But at the time of sentencing neither the judge nor the attorneys made mention of the fact that the charges had been altered.

The 35-year-old victim in this case said she was shocked to learn that the charges had been reduced without notifying her, and was further angered by the lenient sentence. Her outrage was supported by May Lou Leary, executive director of the National Center for Victims of Crime. Leary said that when offenders are allowed to avoid responsibility for their crimes it has an effect on all victims, and especially victims of sex crimes. Sexual assault is a violent crime that is about domination and control of the victim, and what happened in this case reinforces that.

In some ways Judge Klein’s hands were tied when he sentenced Marriott, but if he wanted to give the victim some measure of satisfaction and justice he had options available to him. At sentencing he ordered Marriott to serve four years on each of the abduction and unlawful wounding counts, but then suspended all but 16 months of the terms. He then passed six-month sentences down on the two sexual battery counts and ordered all time to be served concurrently. If he so desired, he could have ordered those sentences to be served consecutively in lieu of concurrently and Marriott would have been given at least nine years behind bars. Still, even the nine years would have been a far cry from the minimum of 20 demanded by the abduction with intent to defile charge.

There was a grave miscarriage of justice in this case and another black eye for the judicial system as a whole. Commonwealth’s Attorney Robert Horan, who has always seemed to be a cut above when it came to fairness throughout the judicial process, is now faced with having to conduct damage control to repair the harm done to the reputation of his office.

Still, what happened in this case leaves me, and I’m certain hundreds of others, wondering just went on behind the scenes to cause such a lucrative deal to be struck. The flag of suspicion should be waving, and rightly so, because of the actions of Defense Attorney Bobby Stafford and Commonwealth’s Attorney Toni Fay. There are many questions in this case and I’m certain that Mr. Horan will live up to his reputation for fairness and honesty and demand the answers. Unfortunately, the damage has already been done to Mr. Horan’s office and not only the victim in this case, but also the countless other victims across the country have been slapped in the face.

James H. Lilley is a former Marine and Police Sergeant with the Howard County Police Department (Maryland). He worked in the Uniformed Patrol Division, criminal Investigations Division, Forensic Services (CSI) and Drug Enforcement Division. His Street Drug Unit was featured in the book "Undercover" by Hans Halberstadt and published by Simon and Schuster. Some of his awards include The Medal of Valor, Four Bronze Stars, Four Unit Citations and the Governor's Citation. He is also an 8th Degree Black Belt in Shorin Ryu Karate and the first American to be promoted to the rank of Black Belt by Mr. Takeshi Miyagi. James H. Lilley is the author of six books: A Question of Honor; The Eyes of the Hunter; The Far Side of the Bridge; Just Retribution; A Miracle for Tony Clements; and, Death Knocks Twice.