This annual report presents research funded projects under the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice (NIJ) in the areas of law enforcement, courts, corrections, forensics, and standards development for 2007.
In 2007, the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice (NIJ) funded a field experiment to examine whether the use of DNA evidence in property crime cases is effective and cost efficient. Funds were provided for an 18-month experiment to Denver; Los Angeles; Orange County, CA; Phoenix; and Topeka, KS. The final report is expected to be published in 2008. In 2007, NIJ launched the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs), which gives families a way to search for the remains of those they have lost. NamUs combines a national database of unidentified decedents with a national missing persons database. Both databases are expected to be linked in 2009 at www.namus.gov. NIJ expanded and reorganized the regional centers of NIJ's National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC) system creating four Centers of Excellence on forensics; communications; weapons and equipment; and sensors, surveillance, and biometrics. The specialized centers focus on testing and evaluating emerging technologies. NIJ launched a new Executive Session on Policing can Public Safety, which will occur every 6 months for 3 years. Participants at each session will discuss policing policies, research evidence, and new directions that can help the law enforcement community over the next decade. NIJ will undergo a intense 27-month evaluation by the National Academy of Sciences to evaluate how NIJ develops priorities and reports research findings, how to strengthen the impact of NIJ's programs, whether NIJ's organizational structure advances the Institute's goals, how well NIJ meets its goals and fulfills its unique role, and which initiatives should be a high priority in the future. Notes and exhibits