#GunCrisis Solution of the Day: Fusion centers

A report from the Las Vegas Review-Journal looks into operations at the fusion center at the Metropolitan Police Department headquarters in downtown Las Vegas.

Fusion centers, developed by the federal government after the 9/11 attacks, are grounded in the idea that information flow between police agencies is key to stopping terrorism. But in Las Vegas and elsewhere, their focus has evolved into a broader “all crimes, all hazards” approach.

Police investigate a drive-by shooting that killed one man and wounded another in the Logan section of Philadelphia last month. Photo by Joseph Kaczmarek.

According to the report, tracking school violence has been an emphasis at the fusion center the past four years, and several agencies are collaborating.

The threats coming into the fusion center are wide-ranging. If a student posts a threat on Facebook, a patrol officer will follow up with parents. If there are rumors of a gang fight at a football game, gang detectives could investigate.

By centralizing information, the fusion center reduces the risk of officers from one agency mistakenly presuming that another is handling an investigation, according to the report. This program is now among of six finalists for the Center for Problem Oriented Policing Herman Goldstein Award, which recognizes innovative public safety problem-solving efforts.

Read the full report: Fusion center helps police with school violence prevention

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