Software to help Sheriff’s Office track crime trends

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — The Indian River County Sheriff’s Office will be receiving new crime tracking tools before year’s end, according to authorities.The Sheriff’s Office will spend approximately $32,300 on two new pieces of computer software once it receives the funds this October. The money will come from a federal grant for which the Sheriff’s Office applied, as it does every year. Kim Poole, a Sheriff’s Office planner and grant manager, said that the agency receives federal grant funds annually through the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Formula Program – Local Solicitation based on the county’s crime rate.The software includes upgrades to the department’s Geographic Information System and its Crime Analyst Software, both of which will assist crime analysts. The computer programs allow analysts to plot where crimes have occurred, where witnesses saw something of note, and other points of interest.Poole said that the analysts would be able to plot the maps and track crime trends in an effort to predict where and when the next crime might happen. Poole explained that the Sheriff’s Office receives one of the smallest grant amounts due to its low crime rate.”It’s always a good thing to get less money,” Poole said of the federal funding. The department also receives other state and federal grants, which it uses to make purchases of new cruisers, portable radios, and other law enforcement equipment. Very rarely does the Sheriff’s Office use grant funds to pay for personnel, Poole explained, adding that the funding could be removed the following year.

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