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Pursuit Technology Impact Assessment, Version 1.1

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2017
Grant Number(s)
Findings are presented from the National Criminal Justice Technology Research, Test, and Evaluation Center’s study of the use of StarChase Version 1.1, which is a technology intended to reduce vehicle crashes due to law enforcement officer pursuits of fleeing vehicles, while facilitating apprehensions in such cases.
StarChase is a GPS-based system that is capable of tracking a fleeing vehicle at a distance by launching and attaching a GPS-tracking tag to a fleeing vehicle, so as to provide real-time data on the vehicle’s location. This impact assessment of StarChase did not involve the investigation or analysis of the technical specifications or performance of the StarChase system; its objective was rather to describe how police operations are impacted by the use of the system. This was done by examining the data available from end-user agencies. Although data were not consistent in type or quantity across the three agencies involved in the study, the assessment team was able to develop general findings and StarChase-specific findings. Regarding StarChase-specific findings, three conclusions are reported. First, its implementation and use varied among the agencies. In some cases, use was consistent with the stated purpose of the system, i.e., tagging a vehicle during or prior to a pursuit and tracking the vehicle from a distance. In some cases, the system was deployed with a different intended use. Second, in two of the three agencies, the data suggest that the use of StarChase, when properly deployed, had a positive impact on the pursuit outcome in terms of apprehensions. For the third agency, apprehensions remained high whether or not the system was properly or improperly deployed. Third, users’ opinion of StarChase was that it is a helpful pursuit management tool, but it is not a comprehensive solution for avoiding or successfully resolving all possible pursuit scenarios. 10 tables and 5 figures
Date Created: February 6, 2017