It is with profound sadness that the National Institute of Justice acknowledges the passing of Virginia Baldau. Mrs. Baldau was a pillar of the Institute who helped shaped some of our most important programs.
NIJ In 1972, Mrs. Baldau joined the National Institute of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, now the National Institute of Justice. During her 25-year career at NIJ, Virginia served the Institute in many ways, including as the Director of Program Development and Director of Research Applications & Training, before being named Assistant Director of NIJ in 1996. She managed numerous projects that advanced criminal justice research and practice ranging from drug use forecasting, anti-ballistic gear for law enforcement personnel, and the development and operation of the National Criminal Justice Reference Service. She received many awards during her career, including the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in 1986. Mrs. Baldau retired from NIJ in 1997.
A new guide helps DNA forensic labs improve efficiency in a multitude of tasks they routinely perform, such as hiring and training, formulating and enforcing case acceptance policies, implementing technologies and methodologies, managing casework and tracking workflows, analyzing data, and compiling simplified reports.
Considering the proliferation of novel psychoactive substances, as well as opioids and opiates, NIJ-funded researchers developed a novel metric to assess the probability that an unknown sample of a drug matches a library sample, with profound implications for standardization of mass spectrometry results.
In a study of individual disengagement and deradicalization processes, NIJ-supported research findings show that there is no one-size-fits-all model of disengagement, as exit pathways are rarely fast or linear. This study also provides a baseline for creating and assessing programs and practices to help individuals exit extremism.
In a new Justice Today podcast episode, Gregory Dutton, a physical scientist at NIJ, joins science writer Jim Dawson to discuss the microbiome: what it is, how it applies to forensics, and the evolution of its role in forensic science.
Unmanned aircraft system include the unmanned aircraft vehicle, the flight controller on the ground, and the system of communication between the two. In law enforcement, unmanned aircraft systems are used in crowd control, traffic and accident reporting, search and rescue, crime scene reconstruction, pre-operational situational awareness, and even as first responders.
NIJ’s Term of the Month promotes research-based definitions of criminal justice terms.
The National Archive of Criminal Justice Data archives data on crime and justice and contains data from over 2,700 curated studies or statistical data series. The website is home to several large-scale datasets, including the National Crime Victimization Survey, FBI's Uniform Crime Reports and National Incident-Based Reporting System, and the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods.
CrimeSolutions Program and Practice Ratings
This practice consists of time-limited, low-dose therapeutic programs delivered in a school or educational setting that teach skills and encourage motivation to change or prevent substance use in youth participants.
This is a drug court program that provides treatment services to women on probation to reduce their risk of reoffending. The program gives preference to women who have higher need and risk profiles, are mothers, and have substance use problems.
This practice includes programs that provide training and information to both school-age youths and their parents to reduce bullying and increase positive parenting practices.
The First Step Act of 2018 aims to reform the federal prison system and reduce recidivism. NIJ is working to assess and develop an existing risk and needs assessment system for incarcerated individuals, and develop recommendations regarding effective evidence-based recidivism reduction programs and activities.