The State of North Carolina gets tougher on crime with SAS® Business Analytics
Increased data volume, archaic information systems, shrinking budgets and constrained resources can hinder law enforcement and criminal justice agencies from effectively coordinating information and proactively maintaining public safety. Public safety agencies need reliable, timely and accurate data to strategically and tactically reduce crime and victimization, enhance public safety and optimize the allocation of finite resources. Challenged with obtaining a comprehensive view of individuals with prior criminal records, including potentially dangerous offenders, law enforcement and criminal justice officials in the State of North Carolina needed an efficient, integrated application to provide quick access to accurate offender information. To replace the manual process of integrating historical criminal data from multiple systems, reduce the risk of overlooking critical data and improve the information needs of law enforcement agencies, the state of North Carolina's Office of State Controller worked with SAS to develop the Criminal Justice Law Enforcement Automated Data Services (CJLEADS) application.
A composite picture, virtually
Based on SAS® Enterprise BI Server, SAS® Enterprise Data Integration Server and SAS® Enterprise Miner, CJLEADS is an on-demand, Web-based application hosted by SAS. It integrates criminal offender data to provide courts, law enforcement, probation and parole agencies with a complete view of a criminal offender. The system also includes a watch list that allows officials to monitor the change of any offender's status, such as arrests, future court appearances or a release from custody. "CJLEADS is a tool to support criminal justice officials with making quicker and more effective decisions," says Kay Meyer, Project Director, NC Office of State Controller. "CJLEADS brings together disparate criminal justice data to help create a more rounded profile of offenders and provides a single source of information from a variety of criminal justice organizations —including court, warrant, probation, parole and local jail information — which agencies can access securely via the Web."
Weaker budgets, stronger protection
With the new system, authorized criminal justice professionals can log in to the application through a secure, Web-based interface to perform searches. Search results on individuals are displayed as summaries, which can be clicked on to view more detailed data, such as an individual's criminal background. In addition, automated messages can be requested to monitor an individual's legal status changes. "Because SAS hosts CJLEADS, the state was able to focus on design and business requirements, rather than procurement and installation of a technical infrastructure," explains Meyer. "With shrinking state budgets, leveraging existing computing capabilities and technical support resources was an economical and efficient way to establish the new application environment."
From 3,000 users to 33,000
"CJLEADS is highly scalable. Initially supporting 3,000 users, it will grow to support some 33,000 criminal justice professionals," she continues. "Based on improved access to information, the state estimates a savings of $7 million annually. SAS brought considerable resources to this project and demonstrated a vested interest in public safety. SAS' expertise in data integration and analytics, as well as strong security controls of the technical environment, application access and authentication, was critical due to the complexity and sensitivity of the data." Meyer says the greatest challenge developing CJLEADS was data quality and the lack of common data identifiers from disparate sources. "Significant time and effort was spent developing consistent business rules to accurately match multiple system records for one individual. Because critical decisions are made based on information in CJLEADS, accurate data integration was pivotal to the project's success."
Preventing crime in less time
Meyer points to a number of recent criminal arrests that demonstrate the effect CJLEADS is having:
The strong, collaborative relationship between SAS and the state of North Carolina has been critical to the development of CJLEADS," she adds. "SAS' knowledge of key technology and best practices, combined with a flexible, iterative design approach, enabled us to meet the tight, legislatively mandated deadline."
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North Carolina Office of State Controller
Law enforcement and criminal justice officials in the state of North Carolina were challenged with obtaining a comprehensive view of individuals with prior criminal records, including potentially dangerous offenders. They needed an efficient, integrated criminal justice application to provide quick access to accurate offender information
SAS Business Analytics, comprising SAS Enterprise BI Server, SAS Enterprise Data Integration Server, SAS Enterprise Miner
Improved data access saves state $7 million a year; reduced manual data integration; reduced risk of overlooking critical offender data; integrated criminal offender data; designed for scalability, from 3,000 users to 33,000; automated watch list lets officials monitor changes in offender status
“Based on improved access to information, the state estimates a savings of $7 million annually ... SAS' expertise in data integration and analytics, as well as strong security controls of the technical environment, application access and authentication, was critical due to the complexity and sensitivity of the data.”
Project Director, NC Office of State Controller