CBM Archives Provides the DM Solution for Virginia State Police
Serving the citizens of Virginia, the Virginia State Police – www.vsp.state.va.us – are mature and seasoned users of IT. The force’s IT and Planning Division supports all operational functions. These range from an automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS), computer-aided dispatch, incident reporting, and stolen vehicle recovery to firearms purchase, vehicle inspection, sex offender registry, criminal history and wanted persons – plus a host of others covering every aspect of police work. Transaction volumes are very high. Currently, there are over one and a half million fingerprint records on file, and more than 75,000 unsolved latent prints. Over the 12 months, more than half a million crimes were recorded, and the Virginia Criminal Information Network (VCIN) processed over 273 million individual transactions.
Storage and retrieval of fingerprints were formerly handled with a manual microfilm-based system. This has been replaced by Tokairo’s TokOpen document management and workflow solution (now named Document Logistix Document Manager) provided by CBM Archives. Employing all modules including, workflow, the system has proved itself for the critical fingerprint storage and access application are now being rolled out across other areas of the forces work. Initial additional applications being considered include the sex offender registry, criminal history requests from schools, and other employers and day-to-day operational files. These include executive orders, correspondence, reports and a whole range of paperwork in a variety of categories currently stored as hard copy in filing cabinets or on microfilm.
Next to be covered by CBM Archives will be all personnel documentation – for over 2,400 staff. Other areas of the force’s operations are also under consideration.
Key drivers “We take around 18,000 fingerprints a month,” says Captain Thomas Turner, Assistant Divisional Commander, Criminal Justice Information Services Division. “Previously this was handled by a manual microfilm system. What bugged us was retrieval. With microfilm you have to page through each reel to find what you are looking for. The retrieval of documents and quality was a problem.” “You could spend half a day looking for a particular fingerprint file. Some images could be dark or hard to read. Some were quite useless. Major issues were quality and speed of retrieval. Essentially, it was a matter of Criminal Justice agencies.” “We knew what the benefits could be – faster archiving, swifter access, more accurate data, less operational resource expenditure – and generally, the ability to provide a better service to officers at the sharp end.”
Reasons for selecting CBM Archives and TokOpen “We looked at several prospective systems and solutions,” says Captain Turner, “and spoke to a number of agencies in the business of archiving. We weren’t necessarily going to go with the highest or lowest bidder. We wanted something that met our needs.” “Key reasons for which we selected TokOpen included the ease with which we could retrieve documents and the product’s indexing and search capabilities. It looked like a quality system. We liked its industrial strength and scalability that would enable us to expand our use of it throughout the force.”
How CBM Archives helped “Before, we would send the prints by fax, mail or hand delivery. It might have taken up to a day. Now, the lab has access to a high quality copy of the print immediately. With 24 VSP sites around the state and 150 users on the criminal side, that makes a big difference”.