National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center
The National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC) was created in 1994 as a "component of the National Institute of Justice's (NIJ's) Office of Science and Technology." The NLECTC system serves "as the 'honest broker' offering support, research findings, and technological expertise to help State and local law enforcement and corrections personnel perform their duties more safely and efficiently. The NLECTC system is assisted in its work by a national and regional advisory councils."
"The NLECTC system consists of facilities across the country that are colocated with an organization or agency that specializes in one or more specific areas of research and development. Although each NLECTC facility has a different technology focus, they work together to form a seamless web of support, providing technology assistance, support, and information."
According to NLECTC:
- The National Center is co-located with its host, Aspen Systems Corporation, in Rockville, MD, and serves as the hub of the NLECTC system. As part of its mission, this Center:
- Provides information and referral services to anyone with questions about law enforcement and corrections equipment or technology;
- Oversees the equipment standards and testing program to ensure that law enforcement and corrections equipment is safe and reliable;
- Reviews and analyzes testing data and publishes test results and consumer product reports designed to help justice system officials make informed purchasing decisions;
- Publishes TechBeat, the award-winning quarterly newsletter that highlights technology breakthroughs and applications; and
- Operates JUSTNET, a website that provides links to the entire NLECTC system and a gateway to other technology sites. JUSTNET assists those seeking information about equipment, technology, or research findings.
- NLECTC-Northeast is located at the Air Force Research Laboratory Rome Research Site, on the grounds of the Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome, NY. The Center leverages technologies designed for the military that can be adapted to meet law enforcement and corrections needs. This Center draws on the expertise of Air Force scientists and engineers, and focuses on concealed weapons technologies, through-the-wall sensors, audio and image processing, timeline analysis, computer forensics, secure communications, speaker identification, and communications interoperability. NLECTC-Northeast also operates the Law Enforcement Analysis Facility and the National Institute of Justice's National Law Enforcement CyberScience Laboratory-Northeast.
- NLECTC-Northwest, located in Anchorage, AL, was founded in 2001 in partnership with Chenega Technology Services Corporation, a technology support company experienced in providing Information Technology support to America's military organizations and private corporations. It identifies, evaluates, demonstrates and assesses technology applications for State and local law enforcement and corrections agencies. They also manage joint technology programs applicable to law enforcement and corrections missions.
- NLECTC-Rocky Mountain, located at the University of Denver in Colorado, focuses on communications interoperability and the difficulties that often occur when different agencies and jurisdictions try to communicate with one another. This facility works with law enforcement agencies, private industry, and national organizations to implement projects that will identify and field test new technologies to help solve the problem of interoperability. In addition, NLECTC-Rocky Mountain houses the Crime Mapping and Analysis Program, which provides technical assistance and capacity building to State and local agencies in the areas of crime and intelligence analysis and geographic information systems. Sandia National Laboratories has been designated as a satellite of NLECTC-Rocky Mountain and works in partnership with NLECTC to focus on technologies for detecting and neutralizing explosive devices.
- NLECTC-Southeast is co-located with its host, the South Carolina Research Authority in North Charleston, South Carolina. The Center's technology focus areas include information technology and technologies for corrections and school safety. NLECTC-Southeast helps law enforcement and corrections agencies acquire and redistribute Federal surplus/excess property. The Center also operates an Incident Mapping and Analysis Program that includes crime mapping training, spatial information management, geographic profiling, and data mining. The Center's technology partners include the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR)-Charleston, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Savannah River Technology Center.
- NLECTC-West is co-located with its host, the Aerospace Corporation, in El Segundo, California. The nonprofit corporation provides technical oversight and engineering expertise to the Air Force and the U.S. Government on space technology and space security systems. NLECTC-West draws on Aerospace Corporation's depth of knowledge and scientific expertise to offer law enforcement and corrections personnel the ability to analyze and enhance audio, video, and photographic evidence. This NLECTC facility also has an extensive array of analytic instrumentation to aid in criminal investigations, such as a scanning electron microscope and a mass spectrometer; these instruments can be used to process trace evidence. The Center's other focus areas include computer forensics, communications systems, and technologies to stop fleeing vehicles.