Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $2,000,000)
The Lackawanna County District Attorney’s Office (LCDAO) seeks $2,000,000.00 in funding through the BJA FY 2022 Byrne Discretionary Community Project Funding/Byrne Discretionary Grants Program to initiate the Gang and Gun Reduction and Intelligence Project (GGRIP) to serve the diverse population of Lackawanna County’s 40 cities, townships and boroughs through aggressive intelligence collection, investigation and prosecution efforts targeted specifically toward gang, gun and drug-related crimes. GGRIP will attack the scourge of gang, gun, and drug crime through a multi-level, collaborative approach balancing aggressive law enforcement with public education and community outreach efforts to gain the trust of community members at the highest risk for victimization by gang, gun, and drug violence and who are most likely to have information valuable to law enforcement. The project will fund the salaries of four professionals who will devote their time and efforts to the gang, gun and drug problem set, including two detectives, a prosecuting attorney, and an administrative manager. Further, Byrne JAG funding will allow LCDAO to: keep the most current technology in the hands of digital forensic examiners; make capital purchases to improve outdated transportation, secure communication, surveillance and evidence collection capabilities; fund a new K9 detective trained in accordance with most current Pennsylvania drug law; provide a polygrapher dedicated specifically to supporting Lackawanna County law enforcement agencies; fund public education and community outreach campaigns designed to prevent gang, gun, and drug crime and encourage community members to share actionable intelligence with police; train municipal police officers in the detection, investigation and prevention of gang, gun, and drug crime; and equip county task force officers with the most current personal protective equipment.
The project aims to bring together data from multiple, disparate collection points (amongst them law enforcement agencies, correctional facilities, schools, and community organizations) and synthesize those data into actionable intelligence which can be utilized to provide quantifiable, tangible results to the communities GGRIP serves. The residents of Lackawanna County demand and deserve assurance that law enforcement takes the blight of gang, gun, and drug violence seriously and GGRIP will be a crucial resource in demonstrating LCDAO’s commitment to attacking this problem in a concerted way.