PURPOSE AND BACKGROUND
As required in RCW 36.28A.040, as amended by House Bill 1952 of the 2001 Washington Regular Session, WASPC is implementing an electronic, statewide city and county jail booking and reporting system (JBRS). The system will serve as a central repository and instant information source for offender information and statistical data. This system will allow the entry and retrieval of real time and historical information on prisoners held in each of the state's jails. It will also provide ad-hoc reports, and summary data at pre-determined intervals for use in managing the jails within Washington. The system is capable of handling a statewide automated victim information and notification system which could be added with the necessary funding.
In the past, local jails have individually collected data on bookings and entered this information in their individual and separate information systems. The collection and retention of this information is completely localized, and not being effectively used to benefit the entire criminal justice community. The information lacks consistency, and is not readily available for either partners in the criminal justice system or legislators who make decisions that affect jails.
Effective management of correctional resources requires accurate data on the number and types of persons admitted and released from the 58 city and county jail systems within Washington. Accurate, timely information is required for jail administrators, law enforcement officials, and elected officials to make informed management decisions. A major problem with Washington's current jail data systems is the inability to provide timely statewide offender based information. Due to the inconsistencies from one jail to another, a perception exists that data is inaccurate and out dated which causes a reluctance to rely on it when making decisions.
Without an integrated information network the jails lack complete information on their prisoners. Localized jail information stays with the local jail. A prisoner's past experiences in jail are not known by other jails. Therefore, when a prisoner with special needs has been released from one jail and is subsequently booked into another the only way the new jail will know of the special needs is if the prisoner volunteers the information or the special needs are observed by the new jail's staff.
For example, an offender who has been identified as mentally ill, violent, and a threat to jail staff or other prisoners in one jail, when booked into another jail, may not be identified as such until they have committed some new violent act. Absent up-to-date and accurate information, a prisoner may be incorrectly classified and placed into housing that does not fit their true disposition. This may endanger corrections officers and other prisoners. In addition, a prisoner may be released from jail when they should not be released and may pose an unnecessary risk to a community.
The Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC) is a unique organization. Not only is it a 501 (c) (3) non-profit but it is defined by state statute as a combination of units of local government. WASPC was granted this unique status due to its ongoing efforts to enhance and promote the criminal justice community throughout the State of Washington. One of the many activities WASPC is charged with is the collection of jail-booking information from all jails statewide.
Collection of jail data began with the Washington State Corrections Standards Board in 1982. The Corrections Standards Board was disbanded by legislative mandate on
The collection includes use of two monthly reporting systems:
Having recognized the need for an integrated information system, the Legislature passed legislation that had WASPC develop, operate and maintain the Jail Booking and Reporting System (JBRS). This system will allow the entry and retrieval of real time and historical information on prisoners held in each of the state's jails. It will also provide for ad-hoc reports and summary data at pre-determined intervals for use in managing the jails within Washington.
WASPC has developed a central record storage warehouse. Appriss Inc. has provided connectivity for the jails to a server and database that makes Washington jail information available to the criminal justice system via a query site on the JBRS web portal. Maximus, Inc. has developed a server site at WASPC which receives information from the Appriss database. The WASPC JBRS database is designed to produce reports at set interval and ad hoc. The JBRS system is capable of:
A central server site has been established at the WASPC offices in Olympia, Washington. Queries of booking information is handled through the JBRS web portal on the Appriss server.
The objectives of the Jail Booking and Reporting System are to:
The project involves the following key items:
The initial phase of the project is to be completed by MAXIMUS and includes the input from jail managers, operations personnel and information technology specialists associated with each jail's information system. Based upon their input and the work performed by a data standards committee, MAXIMUS will determine the necessary data to be received by the JBRS. After the content of the system is determined, MAXIMUS will develop the necessary programs to interface with the designated jail information systems in order to populate the central servers with the chosen data. Appriss took over this responsibility and as of December 20, 2005 22 jails were on-line with another 16 jails sending data to a preparation server prior to being approved to go on-line with the others.
Extensible markup language (XML) is being used to allow for the exchange of data from each of the local jail systems to the JBRS. Connectivity will be accomplished through the use of HTTP and the internet. Firewalls and encryption will be utilized to secure the transmission of the data from one system to another. This allows the safe and secure transmission of data in the most cost effective manner.
The project is nearly complete and it is expected to be turned over to WASPC to become a program in the Criminal Justice Information Support Department managed by Linda Schaffel sometime in the first quarter of 2006.
For more information about the Jail Booking and Reporting System Contact either:
Association of Sheriffs & Police Chiefs
3060 Willamette Dr. NE #200 Lacey WA, 98516
Phone: 360-486-2380 | Fax: 360-486-2381