RTI International - News Release - 09.21.2006
New Book Details Analytic Methods Used to Forecast, Prevent Crime
Data Mining and Predictive Analysis
Data mining analytics help law enforcement officials more effectively deploy resources
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. -- Data mining tools can be used to anticipate when and where future crimes are most likely to occur, according to Data Mining and Predictive Analysis: Intelligence Gathering and Crime Analysis, a new book by Colleen McCue, Ph.D., a senior research scientist at RTI International.
In her book, McCue explains her research that demonstrates how data mining and predictive analytics have helped identify crime trends, anticipate hotspots in the community and help law enforcement officials refine resource deployment decisions to better protect citizens.
"The same tools that are used to stock shelves at our local supermarkets can be used to create safer, healthier communities and enhance homeland security when applied to law enforcement," McCue said. "With some guidance regarding a few 'rules of the road' for data mining, and the application of off-the-shelf software tools, data mining is well within the reach of any organization that has an interest and willingness to put more science and less fiction into crime and intelligence analysis."
McCue's book provides terminology, concepts and practical applications of those concepts for students and law enforcement officials interested in data mining and predictive analytic techniques. The book also highlights specific case studies and success stories that stem from McCue's work with the Richmond Police Department.
For instance, the Richmond Police Department used McCue's data mining techniques to deploy officers for the New Year's Eve holiday, Dec. 31, 2003 and Jan. 1, 2004. During that time period, gunfire complaints were reduced by almost 50 percent from the previous year, even though illegal weapons in the area had increased by 246 percent during that same time frame.
By strategically deploying officers to locations when and where crimes were most likely to occur, the department was able to reduce gunfire incidents with fewer police officers.
"It is my sincere wish that the techniques and approaches outlined in this book will help us to increase the health and well-being of our communities and create safer neighborhoods for all our children," McCue wrote in the book's preface.
While serving as the program manager for the Crime Analysis Unit at the Richmond Police Department, McCue pioneered the use of data mining and predictive analytics in crime analysis. She has also conducted extensive research on violence patterns and has developed and expanded law enforcement and homeland security strategies using data mining and predictive analytics.
"In writing this book, Dr. McCue was mindful of the need to convey sophisticated analyses in practical terms and, accordingly, she prepared her text in a very user-friendly manner," wrote Paul J. McNulty, deputy attorney general of the United States in the book's foreword. "…I am proud to be associated with such a dedicated partner in our shared mission."
Based on her experience, McCue has addressed members of FBI Academy, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service Cold Case Homicide Investigation schools, and members of the State Department, Diplomatic Security Service.
While working with the police department, she also held adjunct appointments in the departments of surgery, emergency medicine and pediatrics at the Medical College of Virginia where she created an ongoing and nationally recognized collaborative effort between criminal justice and health care professionals in Virginia.
Data Mining and Predictive Analysis: Intelligence Gathering and Crime Analysis is available on leading commercial bookseller Web sites.
RTI News Media Contacts firstname.lastname@example.org Lisa Bistreich: 919-316-3596 Patrick Gibbons: 919-541-6136 PO Box 12194 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194