In 2004, the National Institute of Justice created the social science research on forensic sciences (SSRFS) research program to explore the impact of forensic sciences on the criminal justice system and the administration of justice. Much of the early research from the SSRFS program focused on DNA processing and the use of DNA in investigations and prosecutions.
Captain Baughman of the Kansas City (MO) Police Department answers the question “What is risk terrain modeling?” and explains how it differs from crime mapping, what resources his agency deploys at high risk areas, and the results he has seen form using risk terrain models.
Research tells us that a relatively small fraction of individuals experience a large proportion of violent victimizations. Thus, focusing on reducing repeat victimization might have a large impact on total rates of violence. However, research also tells us that most violent crime victims do not experience more than one incident during a six-month or one-year time period. As a result, special policies to prevent repeat violence may not be cost-effective for most victims.
Bill King discusses the operations of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN), a program through which firearms examiners at state and local crime laboratories compare tool marks on fired bullets or cartridges found at a crime scene to digitized images of ballistic evidence in a nationwide database.
Professor Lawrence Sherman explains how policing can prevent far more crimes than prison per dollar spent. His analysis of the cost-effectiveness of prison compared to policing suggests that states can cut their total budgets for justice and reduce crime by reallocating their spending on crime: less prison, more police.
This NIJ Conference Panel will explore the development and use of evidence-based policies, programs and technologies to improve effectiveness and efficiencies related to government. Through casual observation, practices and programs may appear to be effective, but under closer scrutiny the results may look much different.
The management of sexual offenders in the community post-release is an issue of increasing concern to law enforcement, policymakers and the public. In recent years, efforts to strengthen registration and notification have been enhanced. At the same time, comparatively little attention has been paid to related matters, such as how residency restrictions may impact offenders' efforts to find stable work and living arrangements once they are released from prison, whether rates of recidivism have changed, and whether these policies increase the safety of potential victims.