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June 15, 2017

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JUSTNETNews is a service of the Justice Technology Information Center, a component of the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC) System, a program the Office of Justice Programs, National Institute of Justice. We are always interested in our readers' comments and feedback about this service. Please send your comments, questions, or suggestions to

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Federal Funding Opportunities:

FY 2017 Bulletproof Vest Partnership Application Period Opens, applications for FY 2017 funding for the Bulletproof Vest Partnership (BVP) program online through 8 p.m. Eastern Time on June 28, 2017.

Give Us Your Tech Ideas
We are actively seeking ideas to help us identify technology needs and requirements as part of the National Institute of Justice's Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation process.

NLECTC Spotlight

Seminar on Voluntary Technology Standards in Criminal Justice

Attend or livestream the next Research for the Real World Seminar, "Using Voluntary Standards and Conformity Assessment to Achieve NIJ's Mission" on June 27, 2017 from 10:30 a.m. to noon.

In partnership with law enforcement and manufacturers, the National Institute of Justice maintains active standards for equipment, including ballistic- and stab-resistant body armor; restraints; bomb suits; chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear protective gear; and offender tracking systems.

On June 27, at NIJ in Washington, D.C, seminar panelists will discuss current work with a standards development organization to revise, test and coordinate standards for biometrics applications, safety equipment certification and civil disturbance unit personal protective equipment. Panelists include:

  • Lt. Alan L. Hanson, Fairfax County Police Department
  • Melissa Taylor, National Institute of Standards and Technology
  • Bill Fitihian, Safety Equipment Institute, Inc.
  • Jeff Horlick, National Institute of Standards and Technology
  • Mark Greene (Moderator), National Institute of Justice

To register to attend in-person or livestream, or get notified when the recording is online, go to

Safety Bulletin on Officer Exposure to Fentanyl

The Bureau of Justice Assistance's VALOR Program has a safety bulletin available about the dangers of exposure to fentanyl and how law enforcement officers can protect themselves. Fentanyl, a drug manufactured for severe pain management, is 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine. It is relatively cheap to produce illicitly and efficient to transport. It is often mixed with heroin, so users are unaware they are inhaling or injecting an even more dangerous, potentially deadly mix or combination of drugs. To access the bulletin, log on to VALOR for Blue at Features Trio of New Articles, the Justice Technology Information Center's one-stop resource for school safety information, features three new articles this week. In "Indiana County Implements One County, One Protocol," read how the Porter County Sheriff's Office has taken the lead in bringing school districts together under one active shooter plan; in "Youth Court in Schools Project Produces Positive Results," learn about a successful peer-led restorative justice project in two North Carolina counties; and in "Michigan School Introduces Naloxone Kits, Training," read about a project in the small community of Gaylord to introduce the lifesaving medication into its high school and middle school. While you're at, explore resources, a calendar of events and more.

 VALOR Program Spotlight on Safety

The Bureau of Justice Assistance's VALOR Program has a new Spotlight on Safety, "Law Enforcement Professionalism: Set the Standard. Others Will Follow." It provides information to help law enforcement personnel understand why continued professional development matters to them, their departments and their communities. Resources include an article, printable posters, a podcast and a webinar. For more information, go to

Criminal Justice Technology in the News

Law Enforcement News

First Responders Learn How to Identify, Safely Handle Meth Labs
Amherst Bulletin, (06/07/2017), Emily Cutts
More than 250 police officers, firefighters and emergency responders recently participated in a training session in Hadley, Mass., to learn how to identify and safely handle meth labs and learn about other drugs. The clandestine lab training session was provided by the company that developed the first Basic Clan (short for "clandestine") Lab and Site Safety Officer programs for the U.S. Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration. One session during the training featured the opioid fentanyl and the dangers of coming into contact with the drug.
Link to Article

Police Deliver Bait Packages to Catch "Porch Pirates"
CBS News, (06/12/2017)
Police are using bait packages with GPS trackers to find thieves who steal packages delivered to doorsteps. Inside a regular shipping box, officers pack a common delivery item along with a GPS tracking device. In Southern California, Arcadia police say more than 100 suspected thieves have taken the bait. To avoid being a victim, police say residents should have packages delivered to an address where someone can receive them in person. People can also install surveillance cameras to deter thieves.
Link to Article

Erwin Police to Get Body Cameras
The Daily Record, (06/08/2017), Shaun Savarese
Police in Erwin, N.C., will soon be equipped with new, improved body-worn cameras. The department plans to purchase 10 of the nearly $300 cameras for the patrol division. The new cameras are more sophisticated than the ones previously used by the department.
Link to Article

Drone Usage by Local Police, Fire Departments Quickly Increasing
WTOP, (06/08/2017), Neal Augenstein
Approximately a dozen police, fire and emergency agencies surrounding the Washington, D.C., area are using drones to capture criminal suspects and fight fires. Departments using the technology include the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office, the Stafford County Sheriff's Office and Fairfax County Fire and Rescue, all in Virginia.
Link to Article

Prince William Co. Police to Start Wearing Body Cameras
WTOP, (06/06/2017), Neal Augenstein
Police in Prince William County, Va., will begin wearing body cameras in the fall. The department said cameras will be worn by patrol officers, K-9 officers, traffic enforcement and school resource officers. The department tested two systems in a pilot program before deciding which cameras to buy.
Link to Article

Three Samples of Carfentanil Found in Mass. for First Time
Boston Globe, (06/07/2017), Felicia Gans
The Massachusetts State Police Crime Laboratory has identified three samples of carfentanil, a lethal synthetic opioid never before identified in the state. The drug is about 100 times more potent than fentanyl and many times more potent than heroin, state police wrote in a statement. It can be absorbed through the skin or accidentally inhaled. The statement noted that carfentanil has been used to sedate elephants and has no legitimate medical uses for humans. Police said they are not aware of any deaths in Massachusetts currently tied to carfentanil, but several recent overdose deaths in New Hampshire are believed to be caused by the substance.
Link to Article

St. Joseph County's New 911 Dispatch System to Launch This Month
South Bend Tribune, 06/11/17, Ted Booker
First responders and dispatchers in St. Joseph County in Indiana will soon be using a new dispatch system. When calls are taken by dispatchers, the nearly $2 million computer-aided dispatch system will automatically give police and fire agencies basic details. In some cases, it could enable firefighters to arrive minutes earlier to a fire. Police officers will automatically receive information such as maps with the fastest routes to crime scenes.
Link to Article

Shooting Leaves Officer, Robbery Suspect Wounded in Virginia
U.S. News & World Report, (6/12/2017), Associated Press
An officer with the Hampton (Va.) police department survived a shooting following a June 12 robbery attempt thanks to his ballistic-resistant vest, according to a department spokesman. The suspect shot one officer following a short foot chase, before he himself was shot by a second officer. Both men survived, with the officer listed in good condition at a local hospital. Two other suspects were also taken into custody.
Link to Article

2 Ky. Deputies Shot While Serving Warrant; Suspect Dead, (06/12/2017)
While attempting to serve an indictment warrant, two Kentucky deputies were injured June 12 when the suspect began shooting at them from his house. A department spokesman gave credit to one deputy's badge and ballistic-resistant vest for saving him from serious injury; the other underwent surgery and is expected to recover. The suspect, who had an extensive criminal history, was shot and killed at the scene.
Link to Article

Alabama Police Officer Saved by Ballistic Vest, (06/09/2017), Marty Roney for the Montgomery Advertiser
An officer with the Prattville (Ala.) Police Department survived a handgun shot during the course of responding to a domestic violence call on June 8. Two officers approached a group of people standing in a driveway, and one of them fired at least three handgun rounds at the officers. The officers did not return fire.
Link to Article

Corrections News

Bill to Keep Drones Away from Prisons Advances in New York
Unmanned Aerial Online, (06/08/2017), Betsey Lillian
The New York State Senate has approved a bill that would ban civilian use of drones within 1,000 feet of a correctional facility. Under the bill, violators would face a $1,000 penalty for the first offense, with each additional offense punishable as a misdemeanor. However, the restrictions would not apply to the operation of a drone approved by the Federal Aviation Administration for commercial purposes. The legislation now goes to the Assembly for consideration.
Link to Article

Legislators Seek Law to Ensure Prison Visits Are Available Seven Days a Week
Times Union, (06/08/2017), Matthew Hamilton
A group of New York State lawmakers wants to require state prisons to offer visitation hours seven days a week. Currently, the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision has discretion on when to offer visiting hours. Minimum and maximum security facilities have visitation hours seven days a week; medium security facilities have visitation three days a week. A proposed bill would require visitation be available every day of the week at all prisons, with hours subject to department discretion.
Link to Article

Law Enforcement Agencies Join Forces to Combat Contraband in Tennessee Prisons
Knoxville News Sentinel, (06/12/2017), Marissa Lea Gaston for USA TODAY NETWORK-Tennessee
More thorough searches of inmates and of vehicles and people entering prison property are among the measures the Tennessee Department of Correction plans to take to reduce the amount of contraband in the state's prisons. Helping in the effort are the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Tennessee Department of Safety, the Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference and the U.S. Attorney's Office. The partnership's first initiative involved a search of more than 300 vehicles and resulted in the recovery of cellphones and drug paraphernalia. The task force of nine agencies includes the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Administration and Metro Nashville Police.
Link to Article

Appeals Court Tosses FCC Cap on Cost of Calls to Prisons
Miami Herald, (06/12/2017), Tali Arbel for the Associated Press
A federal appeals court has struck down regulations intended to cap the price of some calls to prison inmates. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia found that the Federal Communications Commission lacked authority to set rates for calls between inmates and people in the same state. Companies that provide prison phone service sued to stop the 2015 FCC rules. The in-state rate caps, intended to stop high charges between inmates and people in the same state, were suspended by earlier court decisions and never went into effect.
Link to Article

34 Indicted in Meth Trafficking Operation Run From State Prisons
The State, (06/13/2017), Cynthia Roldán
Thirty-four people in South Carolina, including state prison inmates, have been indicted as part of an investigation into a methamphetamine trafficking organization that largely operated out of state prisons. S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson's office announced that between January and May, a state grand jury investigation returned 19 indictments alleging multiple but connected conspiracies each related to trafficking 400 grams or more of methamphetamine, trafficking methamphetamine and heroin, firearms charges and other crimes. The inmates ran the meth trafficking organization using contraband cell phones and smart phones to direct drug deliveries, sales, payments and other trafficking-related activities of co-conspirators on the outside, the release said.
Link to Article

Painesville Judge Requiring Drunk Driving Defendants to Download Uber, Lyft on Smartphones
The News-Herald, (06/10/2017), Tracey Read
An Ohio judge has begun requiring offenders guilty of operating a vehicle under the influence (OVI) to download the Uber and Lyft apps to their smartphones and enter a credit card number as a condition of probation and to inspire them not to drink and drive. Painesville Municipal Court Judge Michael A. Cicconetti said, "It's just common sense. Now that we have the technology and most people have the ability to do that, why not make it part of their sentence?" In 2016, there were 604 citations for OVI issued for defendants who appeared in Painesville Municipal Court.
Link to Article

New York Spreads Crime Analysis Tech Across the State
GCN, (06/08/2017),  Matt Leonard
The state of New York is opening up crime analysis centers across the state for local police. The centers provide local law enforcement with increased data sharing capabilities along with access to social media mining software and geospatial data systems to help map crime hot spots. In addition to connection with each other, centers have access to information from the State Police, the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, the Department of Motor Vehicles and the federal probation system.
Link to Article

Polygraph Therapy Faces Scrutiny in Child Porn Cases
Courthouse News, (06/12/2017), Adam Klasfeld
This article examines issues surrounding the use of therapeutic polygraphs for sex offenders. The article discusses what occurred during a hearing in New York after an assistant U.S. attorney asked that a sex offender take a polygraph as a condition of his supervised release.
Link to Article

When a Computer Program Keeps You in Jail
The New York Times, Opinion, (06/13/2017), Rebecca Wexler
This opinion piece discusses how aspects of technology advancements and automation are making the justice system less fair for criminal defendants. It says the root of the problem is that automated criminal justice technologies are largely privately owned and sold for profit, and that developers tend to view their technologies as trade secrets, often refusing to detail how the systems work.
Link to Article

Imprisoned by Technology
Australian Broadcasting Company, RN, Big Ideas, (Audio), (06/13/2017)
This audio recorded at Swinburne University in May discusses use of technology such as surveillance, home detention and electronic bracelets as alternatives to incarceration, and whether technology can do everything expected in prisons: punish offenders, keep the community safe and reduce re-offending. The guest is Mirko Bagaric, professor of law and director of the Evidence-based Sentencing and Criminal Justice Project at Swinburne University.
Link to Article

Upcoming Events

For additional information on these events go to:

  • Collecting Footwear and Tire Impressions in Snow - On demand presentation
  • National Commission on Correctional Health Care: Correctional Health Care Leadership Institute, Las Vegas, NV, July 28 - 29, 2017
  • National Commission on Correctional Health Care: Correctional Mental Health Care Conference, Las Vegas, NV, July 30 – 31, 2017
  • American Correctional Association, 147th Congress of Correction, St. Louis, MO, Aug. 18-22, 2017
  • American Probation and Parole Association, 42nd Annual Training Institute, New York, NY, Aug. 27-30, 2017
  • Third World Congress on Probation, Tokyo, Japan, Sept. 12-14, 2017
  • 11th Annual National Missing and Unidentified Persons Conference, Atlanta, GA, Sept 19-21, 2017
  • International Community Corrections Association, 25th Annual Conference, Seattle, WA, Oct. 29 - Nov. 1, 2017

For additional information on these events go to:

  • International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators Annual Conference, June 23-27, 2017, Milwaukee, Wis.
  • National Association of School Safety and Law Enforcement Officials Annual Conference, June 26-30, 2017,
  • Critical Decision Making for Complex Coordinated Attacks (PER-335), National Center for Biomedical Research and Training, June 27-28, 2017, Blackwood, N.J.
  • National Association of School Safety and Law Enforcement Officials Annual Conference, June 26-30, 2017, Miami, Fla.
  • National Sports Safety and Security Conference and Exhibition, National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security, July 11-13, 2017, Orlando, Fla.
  • National Association of School Resource Officers Annual Conference, July 23-28, 2017, Washington, D.C.
  • School Safety Advocacy Council Annual Conference, July 24-28, 2017, Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Campus Safety Conferences,
    - Irving, Texas, June 12-13, 2017
    - Philadelphia, Penn., July 13-14, 2017
    - Long Beach, Calif., July 31-Aug. 1, 2017

The JUSTNETNews Mailing List is maintained by the Justice Technology Information Center, a component of the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center System, supported by Cooperative Agreement 2014-IJ-CX-K404 awarded by the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice (NIJ). Regular postings to JUSTNETNews include abstracted news articles on law enforcement and corrections technology topics, upcoming NLECTC and NIJ events, NLECTC services and activities, new publications, and other technology-related announcements. Please note that providing information on law enforcement and corrections technology or the mention of specific manufacturers or products does not constitute the endorsement of the U.S. Department of Justice or its component parts.

The National Institute of Justice is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the Office for Victims of Crime; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking (SMART).