DA launches Crime Strategies Unit | KOB 4
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DA launches Crime Strategies Unit

Megan Abundis
August 21, 2018 06:33 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A new plan to track down Bernalillo county's busiest criminals was announced Tuesday.

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The district attorney's office is tapping into older cases to build an online database that could lead to hidden criminal networks and more convictions in the courtroom.

District Attorney Raul Torrez says the new Crime Strategies Unit could crack the code of crime and public safety.  They plan to do this by connecting the dots between one individual, a location, or even a gun, all by looking at past crimes.

"When I'm out knocking on doors, I say, "What are your concerns?" Crime is always the first thing, 'my neighbor's car was stolen, my car was stolen', so this is really exciting," said Elizabeth Thomson, District 24 Representative.

With state support, Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez hopes to use data to identify hidden criminal patterns and violent criminal networks around the streets of Albuquerque.

"If you can see the cars they use, the guns they brandish, find known associates," continued Torrez. "By pulling together all of that information much of which sits in boxes in the paper form and has no analysis conducted on it, you can start to be proactive instead of reactive."

Torrez calls the program a turning point that could help solve crime across the state.

"This building contains 99% of data we need to solve almost every crime," said Kyle Hartsock, District Attorney's Office, special agent. "We just have to know how to find it, how to analyze it and then how to make it real."

The new crime strategies unit will also work with New Mexico Tech data and computer analysts.

All agencies will work together in hopes of bringing convictions to criminal networks that are often unseen.

Business groups like the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce are on board, too.

"We are getting smarter than the criminals, identify and catch the worst of the worst aggressively prosecute them and ensure that any would-be criminals that our justice system will be swift and certain," said Del Esparza, Chamber of Commerce.

The District Attorney says this will also help victims who have been involved in past crimes, looking at their history and sending the right services to them.

"We can identify high-impact offenders and we can use precision enforcement and prosecution to maximize our impact on overall public safety," Torrez told KOB4.

No word yet on a final cost for the new system. But with the price tag of the new system software and training comes 3 full-time analysts.

The District Attorney says the new system will take a couple of months before it is completely up and running.

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Megan Abundis

Copyright 2018 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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