Richard Waddell: APL to House DOJ Criminal Justice R&D Center, Evaluate Tech Outcomes

John Hopkins APL logoJohns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory will host a research center for the Justice Department‘s National Institute of Justice to test and conduct operational evaluations of non-forensic technologies for state and local law enforcement, corrections agencies, and courts.

APL has signed a five-year cooperative agreement with DOJ to house the National Criminal Justice Technology Research, Test and Evaluation to house the future center as the department aims to help criminal justice entities in the U.S. acquire new technologies, APL said Tuesday.

“The new center will evaluate the practical outcomes for practitioners of NIJ-funded R&D programs and other technology developments through market surveys, and operational and technical performance assessments,“ said Richard Waddell, director of the center.

Researchers at the center will focus their work on on technology related to communications, biometrics, sensors and surveillance, non-lethal devices and personal protective equipment.

RT&E Center staff will also submit technical reports to NIJ and work to condense those reports into guidelines and resources for personnel at law enforcement agencies, departments of corrections and courts that will implement them.

“There are 765,000 law enforcement officers serving 18,000 police agencies; 470,000 corrections officers serving 4,000 institutions; and more than 32,000 judges serving federal and state courts in the U.S.,“ said Sheldon Greenberg, the RT&E Center's deputy director.

“Their reliance on technology has increased exponentially over the past decade. The need for an independent center to advance this technology and take it to practice has become paramount.“

End-user materials will also be available on the center's website, which is in development.

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