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Massachusetts State Police Recognized for Use of Technology

Statewide database of crimes against disabled individuals garners award from the IACP

The Massachusetts State Police received the prestigious International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP)/Motorola Webber Seavey Award for Quality in Law Enforcement 2004 for its program that uses a statewide database to investigate crimes against the disabled.

The Massachusetts State Police earned top honors for its "Building Partnerships Project." The first of its kind in the U.S., the initiative links law enforcement and human services agencies to more effectively address and prosecute crimes against the disabled. A key component of the program includes a special police unit assigned and housed at a civil protection agency for adults with disabilities. Abuse reports are received through a 24-hour hotline and the unit tracks cases using a statewide database. Since its inception, the number of abuse allegations forwarded to state district attorneys'' offices has increased 2,000 percent.

The department was honored in special ceremony held in conjunction with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Annual Conference held recently in Los Angeles.

"Law enforcement agencies worldwide face compelling public safety challenges," said IACP President Joseph Polisar, chief of the Garden Grove Calif., Police Department. "The need to work collaboratively and share best practices has never been more important than it is today. This year''s IACP/Motorola Webber Seavey Award winners, finalists and semifinalists exemplify a dedication to making a difference in the communities they serve and IACP and Motorola are proud to recognize their outstanding accomplishments."

The IACP/Motorola Webber Seavey Award is presented annually to agencies and departments worldwide in recognition for promoting a standard of excellence that epitomizes law enforcement''s contribution and dedication to the quality of life in local communities. Entrants included projects from India, Brazil and Ireland as well as the U.S.

A panel of judges used five criteria to evaluate all nominated Webber Seavey law enforcement programs:

  • Their impact on improving services available in the community.
  • How they strengthened police relations with the communities the agencies served and whether the programs promoted greater community participation in local law enforcement activities.
  • How effectively available resources were used.
  • Whether the programs enhanced communications within, and cooperation among, local law enforcement agencies
  • And the creativity of the approaches developed and whether they raised the quality and effectiveness of law enforcement services provided.

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