Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2017, $1,916,905)
The goal of the National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP) is to improve the Nation's safety and security by enhancing the quality, completeness, and accessibility of criminal history record information and by insuring the nationwide implementation of criminal justice and noncriminal justice background check systems. BJS provides direct financial and technical assistance to the states to improve criminal history and other related records and to build their infrastructure to connect to national record check systems both to supply information and to conduct the requisite checks.
Under the 2017 NCHIP, the Ohio Attorney General's Office (AGO), Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) will use funds for three initiatives that will update and automate case outcomes from courts and prosecutors in state records and the FBI's Criminal History file in order to further efforts toward full participation in the Interstate Identification Index (III) and National Fingerprint File (NFF).
The first initiative is the modernization of the Ohio Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems (AFIS) and Computerized Criminal History (CCH). The current Ohio CCH system is no longer capable of meeting current needs or responding to increased functionality associated with new federal technologies. All information in CCH is linked to fingerprint records submitted by arresting law enforcement agencies and stored in the states AFIS. This project represents a multi-year effort of the state to overhaul their AFIS and CCH systems.
The second initiative will improve the disposition reporting rate (misdemeanor and felony information) and data quality for arrest records into CCH as well as III so that final case outcomes are available in both state and national systems. Once the criminal cases are disposed, they are put aside for data entry at a later time. BCI staff have discovered through experience that many of the old dispositions do not contain sufficient information to allow the electronic matching to be successful. Currently there is a baseline number of approximately 2,516,034 records missing dispositions.
Through the third initiative, BCI would like to assume ownership of all 222,084 records from the FBI in order to provide complete and accurate criminal history record information to criminal justice and non-criminal justice agencies. The procedure to claim these records is very time consuming. For each discrepancy listed on the correlation report, the OHSID (State ID Number) and the UCN (FBI Universal Control Number) has to be reviewed to establish the exact discrepancy. If the FBI Identity History Summary Check (previously referred to as the FBI rap sheet) contains more arrests than the Ohio rap sheet, the state must find the outcome of the case to ascertain whether a request for a copy of the fingerprint card is needed. If it is not needed, Ohio takes control of the record. Conversely, if needed, Ohio requests the missing information from the FBI and then takes control of the record. These two discrepancies comprise most of the correctional report although there are different discrepancies that may be found on the report which may involve additional steps. AGO/BCI will be responsible for contributing a 10% match under the 2016 NCHIP grant.