A new intelligence sharing hub was unveiled in Hartford on Wednesday, all designed to keep local neighborhoods and streets safer.
A new crime center was developed to keep Hartford safer, and with a 2 percent increase in crime in the city last year, the timing couldn’t be better.
"What used to take six to seven hours, maybe 12 in the past, can take four or five minutes now,” said Hartford Police Sgt. John Michael O’Hare.
The technology is cutting edge, with cameras and databases all working in a coordinated effort at the center.
The information is sent to police officers in real time, arming them with what they need to respond more quickly and effectively.
"They have intelligence that will allow them to make targeted and strategic arrests to take those individuals and groups who pose the biggest threat to public safety off our streets,” said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.
Located at the old Hartford police station, the nearly $1 million project has been in the making for years, and was paid for by a number of federal and state grants, and it has already proven useful.
In fact, crime mapping was used to track a burglary pattern in the Blue Hills neighborhood and Bloomfield, leading to a quick arrest.
“This is the map it says the time of the day and what day they were hitting what location, so they drew up this circle and within one day this gentlemen was caught in this circle,” O’Hare said.
Hartford Police Chief James Rovella said as great as the intelligence is, it doesn’t replace officers on the street.
"I'm a big fan of that officer in blue...that visibility...that can think and talk through an incident,” Rovella said. “Now by combining manpower and the power of technology, city officers hope 2016 is a safer one in the greater Hartford region.”
"We're not measuring success by how many arrests we make. We're measuring success by how safe we make our communities,” Bronin added.
On Thursday night, the mayor will be hosting a town hall meeting on public safety at Hartford Public High School at 5:30 p.m.
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