Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $699,632)
Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) is part of Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government and has partnered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to establish a Crime Gun Intelligence Center (CGIC) Task Force Team to combat the firearm crime epidemic troubling the city. In 2019, LMPD formed the Firearms Intelligence Squad (FIS) which is dedicated to pursuing priority National Integrated Ballistics Information Network (NIBIN) leads with assistance of data collected by the NIBIN Unit, the Crime Information Center (CIC) analysts, two ATF Intelligence Research Specialists (IRS), and a NIBIN contractor. LMPD has been analyzing and entering cartridge cases and test fires from crime guns into NIBIN since September 2015. LMPD’s NIBIN program has been a partner of National NIBIN Correlation and Training Center (NNCTC) since February 2016. The partnership between LMPD and ATF is strengthened with access to a centralized location of information regarding NIBIN leads and individuals associated with NIBIN leads.
Another collaboration already in place is the Louisville Metro Intel Task Force (LMINTEL) within the LMPD Criminal Interdiction Division (CID) which is comprised of officers from LMPD, deputies from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO), agents from ATF and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), as well as prosecutors from the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office (CAO), and the U.S. Attorney’s Office (USAO). The LMINTEL shares gang-related information with the CGIC Team to assist with investigations. LMPD’s CGIC will be mentored by Indianapolis Police Department which has already implemented a CGIC plan.
Although the existing entities and relationships have had success, Louisville is still plagued with gun violence. There has been an extraordinary increase in firearms related crimes, including nonfatal shootings and homicides. Arrests for any type of violent gun crime including misdemeanor and felony weapons violations in which ballistics evidence and firearms are seized at the scene assist in stopping the shooting cycle. We must identify ways to both decrease violent gun crime and increase arrests and ultimately convictions. Enhancing and expanding our CGIC Team is one way to address both challenges and would strengthen already established relationships and deepen collaborations. These enhancements would also provide the opportunities to train officers on the importance of ballistics evidence collection, to improve the analysis and use of ballistics data, to integrate data from existing gun violence reduction programs, and dramatically improve the efficiency and effectiveness of all ongoing efforts in Louisville to reduce violent gun crime.