04/26/2011

Tech used to fill void after officer cuts

"Technology can never fully replace an officer," one chief said, but it can help dwindling departments appear larger

By Kevin Johnson
USA TODAY

ALBUQUERQUE — Police agencies increasingly rely on controversial technology and social media to make up for the loss of thousands of officers and other resources to deep budget cuts, law enforcement officials and criminal justice analysts say.

Some, including the city of Albuquerque, have taken the unusual step of sharing real-time investigative information with private business groups on interactive websites to help stop theft rings, locate violent crime suspects and track fugitives.

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