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BJS SJS 2021 Core Capacity Project and the Special Emphasis Project.

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $231,217)

The Vermont SAC proposes three projects: 1) Core Capacity Project: Custodial Arrests vs. Citations pre and during the coronavirus pandemic. At onset of the pandemic, law enforcement changed its response to criminal activity, shifting from custodial arrests to issuing citations, so individuals were not incarcerated pretrial. This shift allows the SAC to determine if the increase in citations resulted in an increase in arrests while defendants were awaiting trial. The project will use state NIBRS data, court data, and criminal history data to analyze pre-pandemic/during pandemic responses to crime and its impact on public safety. SAC has a data sharing agreement with the courts allowing access to their data for research, and the Vermont Crime Information Center for criminal history data. 2) Special Emphasis 1: Extreme Risk Protection Orders & Firearms Relinquishment. In 2018, the Vermont Legislature passed the extreme risk protection orders law, allowing judges to order a defendant in a relief from abuse case (RFA) to relinquish their firearms to a local police department, a federal firearms licensed dealer or a friend. With the court’s new case management system, a report will be created for RFA data and firearm relinquishments. The SAC will analyze when these orders are requested/issued and follow the orders to the local police departments to determine if the firearms were relinquished. The report will include an analysis of victim to offender relationship, age and gender of the parties, outcomes of the temporary and final orders, and the rate of relinquishment of firearms. It will determine geographic differences in the rate of requests and orders by county and type of relief sought, including a review of local police policies. 3) Special Emphasis 2: Violations of Conditions of Release. VCRs were the most charged misdemeanor in 2019, accounting for over 3,000 charges, and have been in the top ten crimes charged for the past ten years. The report will provide a descriptive analysis of the VCR data, charge data, and criminal history data; detail the relationship between VCRs and new criminal activity; and examine the differences by county, demographics, and prior criminal histories. Included will be an analysis of the condition requiring a responsible adult take “custody” of the defendant until the case is disposed or be remanded into custody pretrial. The report will use the data quality assessment tool to determine the accuracy of the fields.

Date Created: October 25, 2021