Sunday, November 05, 2006

The Future Crime Wave

I have my first post up at the Crime Lab Project Forum. I haven't talked about CLP here before - I don't even think I have my link up yet - but it's time to correct that.

For those of you who aren't familiar with CLP, the goal is to generate awareness about the funding shortfalls facing crime labs in America. You can read more about the crime lab project here and if you aren't familiar with CLP, please, please I urge you to take a few minutes and go over and read about this important effort.

Did you know that killers and rapists are walking free because in some cases, staff shortages are resulting in eighteen-month waiting periods for evidence to be processed? Did you know that victims are being denied any form of justice through the law because the resources aren't there to push cases forward and present enough compelling evidence in court to make them stick?

Not everyone who drops by here is a crime fiction fan, and that's cool, but no matter who you are, your life is touched by crime. At the least, we pay higher insurance premiums because of left, of fraud, of criminals stealing, robbing, thieving and in some cases killing.

At worst, we're direct victims, people who've lost a sense of our innocence by having someone invade our lives.

I remember seven years ago, just after Kevin and I got married. My sister's house was robbed. It happened during the day. The thieves broke in through the window of my old bedroom.

One of the things they stole was a vcr, which happened to have a video that belonged to my niece in it. It was a rude awakening for the five-year-old Arriel, that someone came and took something that was hers. And they shouldn't have.

No matter our age, gender, race, religion, we're all vulnerable.

Help those who dedicate themselves to criminal justice get the resources they need to do their jobs... and ultimately, protect you.



Eileen said...

Thanks for the link- very interesting.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

Sounds like a plan!

Anonymous said...

Interesting timing on this post. Just Saturday night my dad had his laptop and checkbook stolen out of his friend's car. They had been to an out of state football game and had stopped for the night on their way home. Normally my dad doesn't leave his laptop in the car, but it was late, they put the coats on top of the bag, etc, etc... As they were leaving they noticed the plice car in the lot, but there was so little damage to their own car they didn't even notice the theft until they had stopped for lunch hours later.

The laptop belonged to the company he works for, he had to freeze his checking account, cancel his credit cards (he'd used online payment options) and generally make a mess of his life. Right now, I think my dad can totally identify with your niece.

Here in Michigan there are a lot of tests that have to be done in Lansing, the state capital, as that's the only lab with the equipment to do them. Which means you have the entire state sending evidence to them. And then people wonder why it takes so long for cases to go to trial, and why mistakes are made. norby

Sandra Ruttan said...

Thanks Eileen and Bonnie!

Norby, tell your dad to get involved with CLP. If you go to the CLP site, you can select the links for what you can do to help.

I guess I'm feeling that maybe the way to make things change is to appeal to victims to get involved. Sad, isn't it, that they should be victimized first and then have to push for this... But they're the people who really understand why this is so important!