Could This Be A New Tool To Fight Crime?

February 2, 2007
Reported by Vince Atkinson    

Louisiana's crime rate is 24% higher than the national average.   In 2005, the Bayou State had 450 murders and more than 26,000 violent crimes.   What will it take to take care of this growing problem?  That question is much easier asked than answered, but their is a new idea on the table that could help.

Interstate 10 is great for commerce and makes getting from point "a" to point "b" easy enough, but authorities say the road has a down side.  Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff Rickey Edwards said, "The I-10 corridor has always been known as the drug corridor.   From Mexico to Houston, all the way to Florida.   I-10, that's what we do."

Countless drug bust are made on Interstate 10, but keeping track of every criminal in the Bayou State is not easy.   While some law enforcement offices in Louisiana readily share criminal information, the state as a whole is not fully integrated.   Edwards said, "It has not happened in 36 years.   I don't see it happening in the next two."

Now, Congressman Bobby Jindal who is running for governor, introduced proposed legislation in Jennings Friday that is aimed at helping this growing problem.   Jindal said, "The Violent Crime Reduction Act does three important things."  In part the bill would help establish a joint task force to target gang and drug activity.   It would also help fund prosecutors for gang enforcement and award grants for establishing state wide computer databases to track criminals.  Since the bill has just been introduced, their is no word yet on how much money the Bayou State would receive if the plan is eventually approved at the federal level.