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Press Release

Contact:
Teresa S. Thomas
412-268-3580

For immediate release:
November 18, 2002

Campus Police Department Coordinates Crime Information Network Among City Colleges, Universities

Pittsburgh—Carnegie Mellon University's campus police department, led by Police Chief Creig Doyle, is leading a city-wide effort to create a network of crime information among various other universities and institutions.

Representatives from eight local institutions met at Carnegie Mellon University for the first meeting of the Campus Crime Information Network last month. Members of the Carnegie Mellon campus police department were joined by members of the University of Pittsburgh police department, the University of Pittsburgh Department of Public Service, representatives from Children's Hospital, Carlow College, Duquesne University, Chatham College and Penn State McKeesport. Robert Morris College and the Western Psychiatric Institute have also expressed a commitment to the information-sharing network.

"We don't have walls around our campuses. Everything just flows together. Our information needs to flow together, too," remarked Chief Doyle. Doyle had seen members of his police force sharing information with the University of Pittsburgh's police on an informal basis, but Detective Martin White from Carnegie Mellon came up with the idea of getting people from many different institutions together and formally sharing information.

"We all have the same bad guys," points out Detective White, who's been on the Carnegie Mellon police force for 15 years. White had established a relationship with another detective from the University of Pittsburgh, and the two exchanged information off and on, but it was only after two women were assaulted at Pitt that White realized that their exchange had to happen on a more formal basis.

"Even though we're separate entities, our communities meld together," says White, who emphasized to Doyle the need to make the information sharing network completely collaborative.

The first meeting focused on developing a shared information model for the members of the network. The goals for the model were also stated: "to share crime information on a consistent, structured basis to enable campus police/public safety to be more effective, and to [provide] our students [with] better and more timely information about crime on other campuses so they can take whatever preventative steps they deem are necessary to ensure their safety off campus."

All representatives in attendance agreed a few core principles of the crime information network. Each agency will develop an email distribution list with all of the network members on it, and will send every single crime or safety alert they release to their own institutions by email or fax to other agencies. Agencies and police departments will be responsible for notifying the other members of the network no later than 48 hours from the time an incident occurs.

This network "is in everybody's best interest," said Doyle, who also emphasized the need for continued participation among institutions in Pittsburgh. The group has agreed to meet on the fourth Tuesday of every month with the next meeting at the University of Pittsburgh.

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