Computers help authorities catch the bad guys - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Posted by: George Metaxas, 10/30/03, 11:33 a.m.

Computers help authorities catch the bad guys

By Joe Birch

The Shelby County Sheriff's fugitive squad has a new weapon in its arsenal. Crime Tracker shows you how computers will help pinpoint where the bad guys are hiding. 

The long arm of the law went away empty handed in one search for a fugitive wanted for aggravated assault. The deputies' next move? Reach for a lap top to tap into a new clue to find where their guy might be!

Lt. John Harvey, SCSD Info Systems said, "The key to it is it gives them information at their fingertips."  There are some 43,740 outstanding warrants the Shelby County deputies want to serve. Now in the past, the Sheriff's department had up to 5 deputies doing research at 201 Poplar to try and find where all these people are. The new technology will allow those deputies to get in cars with their computers and make arrests.

"One of our biggest problems in the criminal justice community is bad data." So Lt. John Harvey has compiled data bases from every imaginable source to cross reference where a fugitive might be. "We take as much data as we can get our hands on." The system includes pictures that deputies can show witnesses. The departmetns website allows you to e-mail specifics on where suspects are located . It's clear at the Sheriff's department, computers help the long arm of the law flex its muscle!

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