WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WISH) - Students at Purdue University have come up with a new way to help police target where crime is going to happen.
The computer program takes existing crime data, crunches the numbers, and creates spreadsheets to help police better decide where to put their resources. It's called the Visual Analytics Law Enforcement toolkit, or VALET.
Students at the Purdue University Homeland Security Center of Excellence created the program and say it gives police real time data to work with.
“We hope to be able to take the visualization of data and put it in the hands of the officers that will give them a quick intuitive tool that's going to point them in the direction of where problems are occurring,” said Patrick Flannelly.
Flannelly is the Chief of Police in Lafayette. He says that with everyone tightening resources, VALET should help his department do more with less.
“If we can solve a problem at the earliest possible level, we can hopefully in theory prevent future work and free up more time to do other things,” said Flannelly.
Here's how it works: Toolkit software provides real-time data so officers can analyze not only what kind of crime is happening in a specific area, but how often those crimes are committed.
It can also give officers a snapshot of a neighborhoods make-up. And the information is always at their fingertips in the field via their iPads or car computers. It also uses algorithms to forecast future criminal activity, with 95 percent certainty.
One of the software's developers, Abish Malik, says the greatest advantage this program has is giving police more information about the variables they face in any given situation.
“Predicting crime is one of the most challenging problems that you'll ever face there are so many dynamic things happening at the same time simultaneously so we really need dominant expertise and dominant knowledge - you have to bring that into the equation,” says Malik.
A winter weather advisory was issued for Wayne, Union, Switzerland, Ripley, Ohio, Franklin, Fayette and Dearborn counties on Saturday night.
IMPD officials say a 3-year-old boy has died after he was shot in the head Saturday evening.
A major renovation of the Vincennes University Aviation Technology Center at Indianapolis International Airport is expected to begin next month and last about a year