Law Enforcement Innovations in Reaction to The 9/11 Terrorist Attacks and the Virginia Tech Massacre

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The terrorist attacks to the World Trade Center towers in New York City on September 11, 2001 has changed the way federal, state and local police departments communicate with each other, their structures, and operations. The new federal organization known as Homeland Security set out to coordinate their work at the state level, collect, analyze and share pertinent information and intelligence, protect key infrastructure and assets, secure the nation’s borders and ports, team up with federal and local task forces, and prepare new response training, equipment, systems and strategies (Foster and Cordner, 2005). The Federal Bureau of Investigation also shifted focus from addressing traditional crimes to preventing terrorist attacks. This is …show more content…

Further, local agencies saw about a 70 percent increase in airport security and high gains of over 60 percent in intelligence gathering, analysis and dissemination and the security of key infrastructures. 15 areas of increased activity were mentioned with increases varying from five to over 95 percent for both state and local departments. Also, local agencies reported a high increase in the reallocation of resources required for terrorist prevention.

State communication with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Office of Domestic Preparedness and the Immigration and Naturalization Service increased 70 – 80 percent (Foster and Cordner, 2005). In connection, local communication with the FBI, Office of Domestic Preparedness and the ATF increased between 50 and 65 percent. Additionally, state-level training for local agencies increased along with resources allotted to such practices.

Many states are funding intelligence fusion centers that can improve the collection, analysis and dissemination of information (Foster and Cordner, 2005). These centers would include computerized systems, new intelligence analysts and federal, state, and local law enforcement personnel. Three examples of such centers in place are the Arizona Counter Terrorism Information Center, the Upstate New York Regional Intelligence Center and the Washington State Joint Analytical Center. Notably, there is a high demand for intelligence analysts and investigators

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