There has been a recent shift in the mindset of Law Enforcement. With the current social climate and a more prominent focus on mental health, Law Enforcement agencies have made the transition to community protection. Through innovative technology, police departments are putting their best foot forward. These new tools are being used to prevent issues and solve them in and out of the court. Community protection is crucial for effective police work, and digital solutions are making it possible to safeguard citizens. Let’s take a look at a few of the tools Law Enforcement can utilize to protect their communities and jurisdictions.
The first digital solution we want to highlight is SafeEncounter. This is ImageSoft’s newest solution and it’s unlike anything else we offer. SafeEncounter is a community safety database that compiles user-submitted profiles for vulnerable dependents. Loved ones can create a free profile on behalf of a family member or friend who suffers from various disabilities that can impede the ability to communicate clearly during an emergency. Authorized officers can access this information from their patrol vehicles or back at dispatch to help identify the person and properly handle the encounter.
SafeEncounter helps to protect the community by offering proactive solutions to common problems. The database is used most commonly to hold information about citizens with cognitive impairments, intellectual disabilities, communication problems, or severe mental health disorders. Each of these conditions comes with its own risks and symptoms. In times of crisis, information about how to respond can make all the difference. Police will know if a person has any triggers, relevant health history, or requires special care. That way, if a situation arises, officers can respond appropriately and avoid escalating things further.
SafeEncounter can be used even when Law Enforcement does not know who the person is. For example, if someone with Alzheimer’s is found after wandering, police can turn to the database to help them identify the individual and contact their family. All user profiles include photos and physical descriptions that officers can search to determine who they are dealing with. From there, even if the individual is unable to communicate clearly, police have access to all pertinent information including emergency contacts. They can call up the family and have the individual returned safely to their care.
What does SafeEncounter do for the community?
SafeEncounter aids in community protection by acting as a proactive measure for any emergencies involving vulnerable individuals. Rather than waiting for something to happen, SafeEncounter arms Law Enforcement with valuable details about those most likely to need help. By being aware of special conditions or requirements, any and all encounters with at-risk community members can be handled smoothly and without causing undue distress. The portal even provides officers with a map view of the location right from their patrol vehicle computers so they can see who is in their area that might need special attention. SafeEncounter is a revolutionary way to protect the community, and Palatine, IL, our first customer, had multiple “saves” within the first few months of launching the program. Learn more at https://safeencounter.org/.
Vault is the second community protection tool available to Law Enforcement, though it looks quite a bit different than SafeEncounter. Vault is used after a situation or crime occurs as a way to collect and manage evidence. Police are known for their involvement in criminal investigations, and it’s still a large part of their job. Shows like CSI, Law & Order, and other crime dramas tend to focus on this aspect of policing. We all know it’s an important aspect of what they do, but it’s rarely discussed exactly how much it can help protect the community.
Of course, the main goal of criminal investigations is to put the perpetrator in jail and provide justice for the family of the victim. However, it goes far beyond that to offer peace of mind to the entire community by getting criminals off the street; and, it also helps to build trust in the local police force so citizens know they can count on police when they’re needed.
Vault is a digital evidence management system that allows nearly 100% of exhibits to be stored digitally. Any involved party can upload evidence to the platform. Files are normalized into formats that can be played back in-platform without the use of external devices. Files can be accessed 24/7 and shared securely with encryption. Law Enforcement, lawyers, judges, and clerks can all interact with exhibits without a time limit. This means that deeper research can be done to build the strongest case possible. All files are saved for later reference if needed. The archive takes up no space in the office and is accessible from anywhere.
How does Vault aid in community protection?
Vault has many features that make it an excellent tool for Law Enforcement.
- Most popular file types are accepted and converted into a playable format. This is useful with the rise in technology like Ring doorbells, CCTV, and other security cameras.
- Evidence is stored securely and will not be misplaced, even for use in future trials.
- It’s very rare to have a piece of potential evidence rejected due to an inability to manage it. This means that no stone is left unturned, and all proof can be submitted and used in the trial if accepted.
- All files are automatically audited to help protect the chain of custody to avoid exhibits being thrown out.
- All exhibits can be displayed in court, allowing the judge and jury to see them in their true form to enable them to make an informed decision that could get a dangerous individual off the streets.
Learn more at www.DEMVault.com.
Law Enforcement Agency Portal
The Law Enforcement Agency Portal (LEAP) is yet another digital tool designed to aid police in protecting the community. LEAP is a digital platform that allows officers to communicate and share information with attorneys during criminal investigations and trials. Recently, we’ve made it possible to integrate LEAP with the Vault portal so that exhibits can be shared and discussed securely. If new evidence is shared via LEAP, it is automatically copied and saved into Vault. All evidence sent to Vault will initially be stored using the LEA-provided incident number. By storing duplicative copies of evidence, LEAs and Prosecutors will be able to utilize the evidence based on their unique business process requirements (i.e., annotations, redaction, retention, etc.). Once everything has been properly submitted, changes can be made to the number, meta description, and storage location of the file.
LEAP is far more back-end focused than SafeEncounter and Vault, but we wanted to discuss it briefly regardless. At the end of the day, any tool that helps officers do their job more efficiently positively impacts the community. Learn more about LEAP at https://imagesoftinc.com/courts/leap/.
All of these community protection tools are growing in popularity. Law Enforcement agencies across the country are looking for ways to implement technology that can make their lives easier while simultaneously offering top-notch security. All three of the solutions we’ve discussed do exactly that and more. We are passionate about protecting communities, so we are thrilled to work with police departments across the US. If you’re interested in learning more about our Law Enforcement solutions, please reach out to us for a chat.