InSight helps Tuscaloosa agencies focus on safety

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Sept. 19, 2007 – A new data sharing system is helping the Tuscaloosa Police Department work with local agencies to reduce crime and improve officer safety.
The Tuscaloosa Police Department is adopting InSight, an advanced data-sharing solution from Spillman Technologies. The software allows the department and neighboring agencies to connect databases using the InSight broker. This model allows each agency to search for data outside its jurisdiction and immediately receive critical, up-to-date information in real time.
Data-sharing technology is an essential tool in an area like Tuscaloosa that has a highly mobile population, said Tim Watkins, the city's systems administrator over public safety. The city is located along several major transportation corridors and is home to the University of Alabama. During home football games, the city of approximately 83,000 residents stretches to accommodate thousands of visitors.
On game day Tuscaloosa swells to become the most populous city in the state,” Watkins said. Ninty-two thousand people attended the spring scrimmage game.”
With InSight, the Tuscaloosa Police Department will be able to allow the Prattville Police Department and the University of Alabama Police Department access to information in its database. In return, the Tuscaloosa Police Department will be able to search through a wide range of names, addresses and other information collected by the Prattville and University of Alabama police departments.
The Prattville Police Department has been a Spillman customer since 1993. The agency uses Spillman's Integrated Hub, Computer-Aided Dispatch solutions, Traffic Information module, Pin Mapping module, and other Spillman products to serve its community of approximately 25,500 residents.
The University of Alabama Police Department has used Spillman solutions since 1998.
The university uses Spillman's Computer-Aided Dispatch solutions, Law Records and State Link modules, and other Spillman products to help keep their 24,000-student school safe.
The ability to view data from other jurisdictions will help each participating agency improve its law enforcement, Watkins said. For example, an officer conducting a routine traffic stop can use the Insight application to search for detailed information on a suspect, such as warrants or arrests originating in neighboring jurisdictions.
Based on the data received from all of the participating agencies, the officer may approach the situation differently and obtain permission or probable cause to search the vehicle,” Watkins said.
In addition to connecting Tuscaloosa, Prattville, and the University of Alabama, Spillman's InSight will aid several smaller agencies in the area, Watkins said. These agencies will be able to query the database for valuable information like outstanding alerts or warrants. Tuscaloosa Police Chief Ken W. Swindle said he hopes to see more agencies come on board with the project in the future.
The InSight Project will improve officer safety, not just for our officers, but the officers of every agency participating,” Swindle said. We at the Tuscaloosa Police Department are proud to be partnered with the University of Alabama Police Department in bringing this capability to our community.”
Watkins said the Tuscaloosa Police Department chose to purchase a data-sharing system from Spillman because of the Salt Lake City-based company's history of reliability. The agency has been a Spillman customer since 1995. They are one of 16 agencies in Alabama and more than 700 nationwide who use Spillman products.
We are excited to help the Tuscaloosa Police Department expand its public safety software capabilities, and we look forward to continuing our valued relationship,” said Joe Lunt, vice president of sales and marketing for Spillman Technologies.
Spillman Technologies provides a full range of software solutions for public safety agencies, including Computer-Aided Dispatch, Records Management, Mobile Communications, Corrections Management, Fire/EMS Management, Resource Management, and Data Sharing.