Beshear, FBI: Training Available to Help Law Enforcement Pinpoint Violent Criminals
Attorney General Andy Beshear announced today his office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have partnered to provide training for law enforcement officers across the state that will help them pinpoint and link violent criminals.
In July, Beshear’s Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Cold Case Unit and the FBI will host two intensive trainings for detectives, homicide and sex crime investigators and cold case and missing persons units on the national Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP).
ViCAP maintains the largest investigative repository of major violent crime cases in the U.S. It is designed to collect and analyze information about homicides, sexual assaults, missing persons and other violent crimes involving unidentified human remains.
Law enforcement officers will be trained on how to enter case data into ViCAP. Beshear said ViCAP scrutinizes the methods used by violent criminals during the execution of a crime to link to other similar regional, state and national cases.
“ViCAP gives our law enforcement officers the resource they need to find a ‘needle in a haystack’ by using analysts and algorithms to locate and link violent criminals,” said Beshear. “Predators don’t care about city, county or state lines when they commit crimes and through this training more officers will have the ability to connect crime, no matter where it occurs.”
Beshear said the training is provided by the FBI, but attendees must apply by the July 1 registration deadline and meet training requirements, which include having a Law Enforcement Enterprise Portal (LEEP) account, a ViCAP submission criteria case on training day and a laptop with Wi-Fi capability.
The Thursday, July 18, training will be at the Department of Criminal Justice Training, Eastern Kentucky University and Friday, July 19 the training will be at the Southern Police Institute at the University of Louisville.
ViCAP also includes an FBI unit tasked with the analysis of serial violent and sexual crimes.
Dr. Angela Williamson, who oversees SAKI and serves as a liaison to the ViCAP unit, stated that the importance of sharing information across agencies and jurisdictions is vitally important.
“The FBI’s program that supports the criminal justice DNA databases works because law enforcement agencies across the country actively upload DNA profiles from offenders and crime scenes,” said Williamson. “The same principal applies to utilizing ViCAP except it can help link cases even when forensic evidence is not available. Under SAKI, we want agencies to be able to tell survivors that they have exhausted every avenue to try and solve their case, and that includes utilizing ViCAP.”
In September 2018, information from the ViCAP team was sent to the Kentucky State Police. The information led to the indictment of Samuel Little for the 1981 murder of Warren County resident Linda Sue Boards.
In 2012, Little was arrested at a Kentucky homeless shelter. He was extradited to California and authorities linked his DNA to three unsolved murders. Little was convicted of the three murders in 2014 and has confessed to killing more than 90 victims across the nation.
Beshear’s SAKI Cold Case Unit was established in 2017 with a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance. The unit assists local jurisdictions and is committed to building victim-centered, trauma informed practices to comprehensively reform the manner in which Kentucky responds to sexual assault cases.
To date, the Cold Case Unit has secured three sexual assault case indictments.
For more information, law enforcement should contact the Office of the Attorney General’s SAKI Cold Case Unit program coordinator Carey Aldridge at 502.696.5619 or [email protected]Or, FBI crime analyst Glen Wildey at 703.632.4166 or [email protected]